Category Archives: the shame factory

Home. And Petty.

I’ve spent most of the last week grateful I didn’t have a computer. I would have written some incredibly unkind things. I wanted to stoop to a level of petty that would be darn near epic. Why?

Because people get all twisted up in my head. I’m never responding to one thing at a time.

I’ve spent the last few years in therapy doing a tremendous amount of work around the fact that the Bonus Mama triggered all of my “like my sister” buttons, minus the sexual assaults. She has quite a few of the same problems and in my ridiculous codependency I’ve spent a lot of time and energy trying to fix her problems.

It is a gift from the universe that I am now done with that set of behaviors. I never need go clean her house again. I never need try and help her children emotionally cope with neglect. I never need try and pretend that I am unaffected by the physical violence in her marriage again.

I am free.

I think this is a positive step in my life. I need to stop trying to cover for broken people. It’s a real problem I have.

I need to stop investing my life into trying to make up for people who won’t even admit that I’m doing a back breaking amount of work for them. It’s stupid. It’s self defeating. I have spent a lot of time and energy and money over the past few years trying to do something for the ephemeral child self I still have. Other people helped me so I helped her kids.

But I’ve given what I can and it’s time to move on.

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. Part of what this relationship came into my life to teach me is that when my children say, “I don’t want to associate with this person because she is mean” I need to never overrule them again. I need to never ignore such a signal again. I feel deeply ashamed of myself for telling my children to cope with behavior that made them feel diminished because I wanted weekend babysitting. That was wrong of me. My behavior was selfish and disgusting.

I was wrong.

I will never deliberately send my children to the home of someone who speaks to them with contempt again. I. Was. Wrong.

Hopefully I have learned the lesson I needed to learn and in the future when someone triggers my “like my sister” buttons I will run like my tampon string is on fire.

No more hoarders. No more people who refuse to acknowledge that they are literally physically, emotionally, and mentally unequipped to take care of their children while they brag about how great they are. No more people who are in a marriage that involves domestic violence, gaslighting, stone walling, and screaming matches that the children can hear only to turn around and tell me that if the marriage is destroyed it’ll be my fault. Sure. Because y’all had none of these problems the day I arrived. Right. Who is the one with the convenient memory? I write down all my bad shit so I can’t claim it didn’t happen. Remember how I’ve begged you to document your DV for 7 years because shit like this comes to a head and you always said, “But I don’t want to remember.”

Sure. If your marriage is destroyed it’ll be my fault. Yup. Right. Because I’m the one sitting there filled with contempt. Yup. That’s me.

Take your guilt trip to someone who is stupid enough to be buying. I’m fresh out of money for such bullshit.

I am free.

Do you know when I freaked out and started demanding that your kids be put in school the fuck away from you? When you took them to Moana and came home crying because you believe your children are incapable of understanding and appreciating the story. Guess what? Your kids are capable of understanding. You are incapable of teaching and your children need to spend time with competent teachers who can teach them. Stop fucking over your children because you are fucking broken and you want your children to be as limited as you are so you feel comfortable. Your children have more potential than you do. Let them go be taught by someone with actual ability to teach and they’ll be ok.

The worst thing that ever happened to you was someone telling you that your IQ is high. You use that number as an excuse for why you are better than people as you cannot fulfill basic life functions. It’s sad and pathetic and your fucking children need to be educated by people who have the humility to say, “I don’t know everything so I’d better study.” You think that if you buy all the books and don’t read them it’s just as good.

Your children deserve better than to be locked in your company all the time.

And after this I need to never ever write about your family again.

I’m done.

Wrong again

It’s one of those times when my anxiety is on hyperdrive. I’m doing everything wrong, right? Every interaction I have with people seems to be fraught.

One problem is that I’m struggling with how much control and influence and power I have. There are times and places when I don’t agree with how something is being handled and I shut up because there’s nothing I can do. Then there are times and places where I feel like I am a bad person if I shut up because someone is being harmed and if I ignore that… I’m part of the problem.

I’m part of the problem. If I see people being harmed by others in their life and I do nothing… I’m saying I basically agree.

What if I don’t agree that something is being handled right?

Good luck with those feelings.

Because I don’t get to decide. And I’m afraid that by talking about what I see I am going to become the problem and then I won’t be able to help in any way because I was stupid enough to talk about the problem.

Not everyone can do everything. We all have limits. We all have things we can’t do. I can’t teach fussy, fiddly little activities that involve a high amount of fine motor control. Even if I can do it (under protest) I can’t teach it because I get frustrated and angry and explosive. So I outsource that shit. I can’t teach everything. My kids take classes because I can’t teach everything. I am not that cool. That’s why as they get older they will spend more and more time away from me. Because they will have mostly learned what I have to teach.

I don’t think there is one Twue Way that parenting or schooling should happen. Some people like home schooling and it works well for their family. Some people need to have their kids in school. Some people need to have their kids in school and after school care every day for any one of millions of potential reasons.

None of these choices are wrong if they work well for the child and the family. It’s when the solution is clearly not working for either the parent or the child that you need to look at making changes.

It is easy for me to sit on my high horse and see the problems in other peoples systems. I’m afraid I am failing to see the problems in mine. I was honestly hoping for more criticism from Stanford because other than “Do more academics” which was the plan anyway and which we have already caught up on…. What do I change now?

I have no feedback to help direct me. Just… do something. What you are doing seems to work ok.

THAT’S NOT GOOD ENOUGH. Everyone fucks up. Everyone has things they don’t do well and things they do very well. WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?!

I shout more than I should. But professional evaluators tell me I don’t shout as much as other people and it isn’t that big of a deal.

So what does should mean anyway?

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know.

So anxious. So worried that I’m going to hurt everyone and wreck their lives and make it so they are not ok later.

This is eating me alive. It has been for a couple of days now? Turbo anxiety. How am I hurting everyone?

I want to run away. I want to disappear. I want to go somewhere that no one knows me. (Good luck, motherfucker. Name a continent (other than Antarctica) and I will name countries I need to avoid if I want to make sure I don’t see anyone I know. I run into people I know most times I travel internationally. I know too many fucking people.)

I love you all. It’s just hard to run away from you.

I want to run away from my own self perception. Because I’m afraid I’m doing everything wrong. I’m afraid I’m hurting people. I’m afraid I’m a giant let down. I’m afraid that by trying to help I am going to make things worse. I’m afraid that by trying to help I am going to be hated so much that hating me becomes the problem instead of fixing the problem.

Fuck.

I think I’m going to take a week or so off from reaching out. I feel like I am hurting people by existing. Maybe if I hide in my house and keep my crazy to myself that will feel less true. Don’t interfere with other peoples lives. Even if there are problems.

It isn’t my place.

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.

Sex and fucking up

I had a great chat yesterday. It made me think about a lot of how I’ve screwed up this year.

Sex is complicated. We have sex for so many reasons. For connection, intimacy, orgasms, bonding, feeling-not-alone-in-this-minute.

The thing is, that’s complicated. Why didn’t I pick Noah for every time I wanted sex this year? Because that’s complicated. Sometimes sex with a particular person is loaded with implications across your whole life you can’t handle and you want the ease of sex with someone else. Sometimes I wanted to feel like I still had the ability to connect with new people.

New people have been very instrumental to my survival. I get that it isn’t something that is a big deal to everyone. I know that lots of people have been safer in the known communities of their lives. I have survived by over and over again throwing myself backwards into the arms of strangers and just praying they would catch me. At this point it is no longer a survival mechanism but it is an ingrained habit. That’s complicated.

I don’t think I chased sex as self harm this round but I have certainly done so in the past. Sometimes the choice is, “Do I hurt myself in a known and predictable way because I don’t like myself very much or do I take the risk that this person will be nicer to me than I am able to be to myself or maybe they will hurt me more than I would hurt myself. Roll the dice.”

That’s a choice I’ve made many times in my life. If you haven’t had to deal with the cognitive load of poverty plus severe traumatization… you probably won’t understand. It will seem baffling to you that someone would make such a choice.

I’m glad you’ve never been there. That’s awesome for you.

I’ve been there a lot. I’m not there lately, but I have zero judgment for someone else finding themself in that position. It happens.

There have absolutely been nights when I’ve picked up a stranger and fucked them instead of hurting myself because I didn’t think I could stop until I put me in a hospital.

Was that a bad choice? I really don’t think so. I think I made the best choice I could given all the circumstances of my life in that moment.

It is hard to keep the larger picture in mind when you are judging one particular choice. Choices that were completely reasonable for me at different points in my life shouldn’t be judged the exact same way at this point in my life. I’m in different circumstances. I have different options.

To put it bluntly: I can have an emergency “weekend trip to relax” at this stage of my life. If I feel like I’m going to freak out and do something drastic… I can make it a very safe kind of drastic. Because I’m rich.

But that was literally not available to me before marriage.

Money. Money. Money.

If you have enough money, time, support, fill in the blank to have better options… who the fuck are you to judge someone doing the best they can!?

Get off your high horse.

But I’m really not in the same position as I once was.

How in the hell is any of my behavior this year justifiable? Hunh, hunh?

I’m not sure I can “justify” my behavior. I think I can explain it. I don’t think my explanations are “good enough” from many points of view and there’s not much I can do about that.

I learned things I needed to learn. I was able to find words for problems I wasn’t able to find words for until I processed all the way through some extreme emotions. I was able to change boundaries that were a big problem for me.

Could I have found a way to do it without freaking out and breaking a lot of rules?

Maybe. I tried. I failed.

I succeeded when I blew the boat up.

Things are going a lot better in a variety of ways. Was it worth the cost? Yes. To me. Was it to Noah? He’s still deciding. He’s still raw. That’s fair.

Sometimes we don’t do things to people and they hurt anyway. I didn’t go out and fuck people to hurt Noah. That’s not why it happened. We are all autonomous beings running our own stories and our behavior is not always about our partners. We have our own narrative running. It isn’t about you.

Even if we love you. Even if there could be negative consequences for you. We can’t make every single choice only about you. That’s not a way to be a person.

Would it be nice if our choices didn’t hurt you? Yes.

Yes.

I played a very careful line this year. I didn’t actually do stuff that was that risky to my life. I mostly went out and spent extra time with my friends. People who have been good to me for a long time. I had a tremendous amount of fun. It will help keep me warm for years to come. Was it worth the price I paid?

Probably. Does that mean I can do it like that again? No. I really can’t. It would break Noah.

What does that mean? Our relationship functions based on a lot of trust and mutual worship. If I kill that then I’m kinda destroying both of our reason to live. Whether or not I’m doing something at Noah… I need to pay attention to the impact. My life is completely intwined with him.

If I rock the boat he feels every wave. There is not a lot of separation there.

I’m not sure we will ever get to the point of being “polyamorous” even if we are allowed to discuss it in ten years. But it is ok to have sex with our friends sometimes if we do it together. Is that my ideal? I don’t know. I don’t think my ideal is more fair so I guess it will have to be ok.

There is no fair.

I get why we are both so possessive. I see the holes in both of us that we use one another to fill.

Sex with friends is different than the anonymous sex I also like. They scratch different itches. Sex with friends is safer and more predictable (not in a bad way). Anonymous sex allows me to feel like I am touching the core of connection between strangers. It is both intimate and distant in a way that feels like a spiritual practice to me. The trust and risk are intense rushes.

But my life is wrapped around Noah. So whether or not I’m doing something at him… he will feel it.

Noah doesn’t feel so awesome about my having sex with other people. He wants me to keep my worship at home. When we are having sex with other people together, that’s ok. That’s not scary or hard. Well, sometimes it is logistically hard or a position is hard or… but it’s not threatening in the same way. We are having an adventure together. No one is left to sit with their imagination and fear.

Noah really doesn’t want me to go off alone any more than I want him to. Seems fair. Annoying, but closer to fair than most things ever get.

Why annoying? Because I am selfish selfish selfish selfish selfish. A lot of the reason I have sex is for the orgasm and changing partners increases that like a motherfucker. Sigh.

No life is perfect.

(For the record: Noah has been working hard on this and has had a pretty fucking outstanding success recently. There’s an A for effort and result.)

I know he’s trying. I can see it. I don’t think it would be possible to look at Noah and not see that he is trying as hard as he possibly can for me.

I’m so annoying and hard.

He works far harder than anyone can ask for; that kind of effort is a freely given gift. I know how lucky I am. My physical and mental health issues have not been easy. But Noah considers my companionship worth the cost.

How in the hell did I end up here?

I auditioned hundreds of people and Noah won the part.

I think we are much better and more interesting together than we ever were apart.

I’m looking forward to pregnancy. I get so exhausted that our pace of life will utterly collapse. Yeah, yeah, pregnancy isn’t a disability yeah yeah pregnant women should carry on as if nothing was happening…

I can’t. Gestating is fucking hard in my body. Remodeling and resettling the house has to be complete by January. Next year I’m going to work on academics with my big kids, sit around, sleep, exercise, eat and go grocery shopping.

I’m probably not going to get much else done, to be honest. And that’ll continue for at least 3-6 months after the baby is born.

I’m toast. Breeding is hard.

I’ve completed the cycle and come out the far side more than once so I’m very aware of what it looks like for me.

I’m really excited about the possibility of a pregnancy where I am in much better physical shape to start with (hello marathon and half marathons, you have halo effect I still feel) and I have my IBS mostly under control and I can breathe through my nose. This will be a different experience. I’m also older. This will also be a medicalized experience (hiya bleed out problems) which is kinda terrifying for me.

All the feelings. And my back is giving me trouble. I need to finish this damn remodel. But bending over really kinda sucks.

I’ll get through it. Put a corset on and get your work done, woman.

It’s kinda funny how we all adapt to the tasks life puts in front of us. This art shit weighs on my soul. I really am more calm in my home because of the art work. It is so easy to ground in my house. When you are here you are really in a particular, individual place. That’s a big deal for me. In other peoples homes, in most of the homes I’ve ever lived in… they all kinda blend together. Sure the knick knacks and furniture are sorta different… but the white walls meet the white ceilings and I want to crawl under a table and cry.

No, it’s not rational.

I do not want a fancy “nice” bathroom that looks like it could be in a hotel somewhere. And I’m willing to pay a ridiculous amount of money for the experience I want to have. Every doctor I have wants me to take baths as often as I can. I spend time in my bathroom. I recycle the water too. To deal with my hippy guilt. (The internet tells me that epsom salts, baking soda, vinegar, and sugar are all fine for plants on a small scale so my bath water is fine  for my plants. Woo hoo.)

We’ve had a broken toilet for a long time. We’ve been using the grey water to flush the toilet. I’m thrilled that with the increased bath capacity of water I will also be able to use the water for more plants. I’ve always used some of it sometimes… but never for plants if someone has used shampoo or soap.

Why am I so tolerant of my friends having quirks or needing accommodation for their mental health needs? Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

Uhm, err, just because I’m a nice person?

*cough*

Because I fucking obsess over what to do with my bath water. I got no stones to throw on people needing to do their thing.

Oh man. I’m going to go through a pregnancy in a bathtub big enough to roll over in. Oh the glory.

Spoiled rotten motherfucker.

I really like my house.

Did I mention I’m having candle holders permanently installed on the walls of the bathroom? And there are skylights above it?

The walls are going to be glittering scenes of autumn and winter. I’m working on them.

My house is a very particular place. I like it so much.

I need to clean it. But that’s a problem for a different day. It won’t be really cleaned until the remodel is done. Too much dust and dirt is being generated every day. Not worth a deep clean. I’ll probably splurge on professionals in January at the start of the pregnancy.

Then I’ll spend a year basking in my family. In 2016 I was supposed to learn how to love myself. I don’t know that I managed, exactly. But I’ll spend 2017 hanging out and letting my family love me. That’s… almost the same thing?

Today will be a Zen sorta day. Noah has a dentist appointment. I’m watching a neighbor’s child in the morning and walking them to school. It’s kinda funny. Then I get to come home and get the kids onto chores and academics while I work. I will have to find a way to do work that is right next to them so we can talk while they do their stuff. They always have questions, which is very appropriate.

Tonight we are going to trick or treat with friends we haven’t seen much in the year since we’ve been back from the road trip. We’ve been really bad friends this year. I’ve dropped everyone and everything on the floor for this remodel. And I do it when I’m doing the breeding thing too.

Uhm, I’m sorry. I will crawl out of a hole again in the future. I hope you still like me then.

But yes. Touching base with old friends. Longevity is a big deal for me. A dear woman I know is deeply associated with a phrase: “Friends come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.”

I’m really curious which threads are deep enough in the weave that I will know them for most of my life. I am made up of the people who know me. The people who carry my story with them when they go. I am made up of the people who sometimes ruefully think, “What would Krissy do?”

I am a creation in your mind as much as I am anything at all. And the fact that you think about me. That fact is enough to mean that even when I fuck up, I am maybe not beyond forgiveness.

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.

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.

What does “dating” mean anyway.

I kinda had this epiphany yesterday.

“Hey Noah. Have you passed up chances to play with Beautiful?”

“Not really.”

“Meaning you take them any time they come up.”

“Yeah.”

“And that’s been happening for eight years. Yeah. You’re dating.”

But not dating in a way that scares the shit out of me and causes me to have panic attacks and freak out. Because it’s very low key.

It was just funny to think about. Because if I’m dating my submissive… I have only had like two more dates with him than Noah has had with Beautiful and I’m definitely dating him.

WHY DO WE HAVE TO USE THESE WORDS. FUCK ALL THE EVERYTHING.

But I don’t think this idea that Noah isn’t going to date is tenable. It’s a nice idea. But yeah. It’s not going to be uhhh accurate. Right now the person he is dating is comfortable with it being at the whim of my mental health (thank you, thank you, thank you) but that’s a messy thing. I don’t want to be the weather vane controlling everyone’s lives as I go up and down the roller coaster.

Oh fuck everything.

The more honest with ourselves we are about what we are doing the less likely it is to blow up.

WE AREN’T DATING WE ARE JUST VERY GOOD FRIENDS WHO HAVE VERY INTIMATE CONTACT. FOR YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS.

Yeah. You just tell yourself whatever the fuck you need to say to get through today. The truth will still be sitting there.

Dating.

What does dating mean anyway? I used to get so mad at my Owner when he would say he hadn’t dated someone. I was all, “You had a three month period where they were at your house three nights a week. You dated for a brief period.” “Oh but it wasn’t serious dating so it’s not dating.” That conversation made me want to break glass.

Thing is, Beautiful is mostly happy with group dates where they just split off to play for a while and otherwise we are together. I like that. I like that a lot and I’d like to see if anyone could fit into a similar sort of role in my life. If these people want to come hang out with us when I am pregnant and miserable or in the babymoon year…

I wouldn’t be alone this time.

I mean, I’m not going to be alone this time. I have the big kids and Noah works from home. It is going to be different from top to bottom. But the kids aren’t company and… Noah still has to ignore me for a large chunk of the day. That’s fine. I miss talking to more people.

Ironically one of our children said, “We should name the child (Beautiful’s real name) because that is a beautiful name.” I think this person is in our life. Ya’know…

loved working retail. I was good at connecting with people all day long one right after another. Being home is…. hard.

And begging friends for play dates is hard work. Mostly everyone is too busy. Or they only want to get together under some narrow parameters outside the house because they don’t want me in their house so they feel uncomfortable coming to my house. Sigh. I’m totally ok with always hosting. I don’t feel imposed upon. I feel catered to.

I feel really really guilty asking people to drive to me all the time. The road goes both ways and I should offer to reciprocate. But I really don’t want to. So I’m asking people less. Because I’m feeling bad about asking.

What is dating? Dating is an extra layer of “It is ok to inconvenience me as you ask me for something.”

Why do I think things with Beautiful aren’t just casual play partners? Cause when I ask if things will escalate when I’m pregnant and not interested he does that head duck thing where he doesn’t want to admit I’m right.

I guess it is good I haven’t managed to chase off every woman who was interested in Noah. Sigh. I swear I wasn’t trying.

I wonder if ADD meds would help with my urge to self harm. A quick search says it is inconclusive. I’d be happy to give it a go.

I don’t know if I want to continue Abilify. I still am not convinced it is doing enough positive. An inch of improvement isn’t worth it. And the kids say I’m getting crankier.

Ok, here’s some blatant honesty. One reason I have always harshly rejected the label of poly is because I have known some extraordinarily bad parents who happened to be poly. It is more important to me that I nail being a good parent than that I nail any other role. If I’m a bad wife, girlfriend, friend, whatever. I can live with that.

I don’t think I could live with myself if I really believed I was a bad mother. I’m a harsh critic. I work really hard on my behavior for my kids.

I’ve seen people do poly really wrong. I’ve seen it hurt kids a lot. I’m scared of that. I’m really really really scared of that.

I like nonmonogamy. It means that our lives aren’t just sexually exclusive. It doesn’t really make any promises about the size or shape or definition of what anything inside of that means. It can mean a lot of different things and a lot of different levels of friendship and love.

What does love mean anyway?

It means I want Noah to be happy and not depressed. That means that when my body goes completely to shit when I’m pregnant… either I encourage him to see Beautiful more (he slept with a different friend during other pregnancies) or I deal with him getting increasingly depressed. These are the options. We’ve been through this dance. I know what the choices are.

But what about the absolute freaking out I do when he comes home? Meh. Even that is muted when I’m pregnant. I don’t give a shit about much other than how much pain I’m in. Bitch come here and rub my back. And my arms. And my feet. Just don’t stop rubbing till tomorrow, ok?

My shrink said she didn’t know if I could get over my fear of Noah dating in this lifetime. But if it has already been kinda happening for eight years… (I actually have a specific brain hack plan in place for how to deal with moving through some of this fear and we have a phone called scheduled on Friday to find out if we will be able to do it.)

Where is the threat?

What is the threat?

What is there to be afraid of. Other than that he will be too god damn enthusiastic when biting my neck.

OW

When I come out of feeling asleep from the breeding period, I wake up with a vengeance. Noah doesn’t do that. If he falls asleep again… waking up would be hard. He’s going to get very habituated to his depressed habits and that doesn’t suit my lifetime goals.

Where is my enlightened self interest here?

I woke up after 6 hours of sleep, and ended up painting by candle light starting at 3am. I’m tired. But I think well in this kind of tired. I read that is an ADD thing too. Deliberately exhausting yourself before you can focus. If this is a lot of what the problem is… I’m going to be so bitter it hasn’t come up before now.

I’m almost 35 fucking years old. I had problems all the way through school because I was a disruptive little snot. Why didn’t anyone ever suggest this?

Ugh. Anyway.

I’m going to add to the data form for the Stanford folk that I think Eldest Child has it. Both she and I only skip one to two markers per person. Different markers. We both kinda scream it. If you sit and read books about case studies that is. That whole super high needs baby thing? Yeah.

Eldest Child doesn’t look like me but she has a lot of my personality and physical weirdness. A lot of extreme sensitivities and fussiness about needing things to be just so. She gets overwhelmed, but I manage her overwhelm so well that it is practically invisible at this point. I would not want her on medication. She is learning to cope with her body and she’s doing great for the life she has now.

But I bet I could learn some tricks to help both of us.

And you know what? Adding people into our lives will be adding people who might know more about this disorder than I do. People who can help me so that I don’t have to be the expert on everything.

I’d be ok deferring expert status on a whole lot of shit. I don’t need to know everything in the world. Ain’t my job. I have enough jobs. I’m tired.

I’m told it isn’t my job to meet everyone’s needs. Believe me I know. But I still feel like what I have to offer is so very inadequate. I am so high maintenance. What do I offer that is worthy of such effort?

Inclinations

I’m running into a problem in my sex life. I’m closer to a vanilla bottom a lot of the time and that’s some serious mixed signals in my little world. I like sex. I don’t need it to be that harsh. I don’t need to be hit all the time. I really totally don’t fucking need to get pinched a bunch. My body lives in a lot of pain a lot of the time. I spend a lot of time trying to manage my pain levels. Getting hit is complicated.

But I’m a masochist. I really am. Sometimes it is the best thing ever.

I’m not that much of a sadist either. I have times when I get really super duper in that mood and when I’m in that mood absolutely nothing else will do…

But if you look at the last 15 years… I’m not a serious sadist. Lots of years involve no sadism and only a little bit of missing it.

And I’m heading back into another breeding period. My masochism and my sadism went on walkabout last time. I still like sex. And I want kissing like I want air. I want lots of gentle touch because my whole body is going to fucking hurt for nine months. I am not an easy pregnant person.

I’m even more weepy and sad and isolated feeling. I want my mother and I can’t have her and that hole in my heart eats at me so badly when I’m pregnant.

It has been hard for me my whole life that when I feel worst I am the most isolated. It happens over and over. If I’m sick… I’m usually alone.

I’m looking forward to a pregnancy with a work-at-home partner and older children. I hope it won’t feel so sad. I’m kinda hoping that we can find a way to have people come over that isn’t a problem.

I don’t know what the future will hold and I’m feeling like a huge selfish asshole. I’m worrying about my needs and I’m being really ungracious and fussy about other peoples needs. I’m not being generous or loving. I’m such a fucking asshole.

Part of the problem is I have a very long list of people who want me to consider their needs and feelings. They conflict–I promise you. I have to kinda prioritize and then where in the hell do I fit in?

I don’t know. But I’m sharp and difficult when I say no because I hate saying no. I feel like such an asshole. “Hey you are being brave and wonderful and asking me for this thing that is really important to you. OH MY GOD DO YOU KNOW HOW FUCKING TIRED I AM!?”

I can’t remember the last time I got more than six hours of sleep in a night. It’s been a bit. I’m dealing with 2-4 hours a lot of nights. What can be done about it? Well I see a whole bunch of doctors and I try what they tell me to try and…. here I am.

My shrink wants me tested for ADD because in her opinion it is not fucking normal to go on 2-4 hours of sleep a night, hold together (mostly) my normal life and have sex for an hour or more most days of the week. She says that is an excessive amount of energy. Really outside the range of normal.

I wouldn’t fucking know.

I am not as toppy during sex as some folks would like.

The other night with Sweet Boy he really wanted me to top all the sex. I could for a few minutes then I untied him and said, “No I can’t do this anymore.”

I don’t like running the fuck very much.really don’t like it much past the first or second time of having sex together. I get it the first time… I’m weird to fuck. Past that, I’m seriously a bottom when it comes to sex. And that passivity goes on turbo when I’m pregnant. I’m receptive but initiating feels so awful.

And if I have to tell you what to do and how to do it? Shit. I’d rather pick my nose.

No offense. It’s not about you. It’s about me.

When I quit my job when I was pregnant with Eldest Child I had severe nausea (I was puking multiple times a day) and I was falling asleep at work, in traffic… everywhere. I could not stay awake. A friend who was a nurse asked me what job I would go get instead because “gestating isn’t a job.”

Many other friends were… happy to share with me their opinion that pregnancy isn’t a disability and I should buck up.

You know what, motherfuckers? If you don’t live in my body…. shuddup. I god damn start out disabled. Pregnancy is a nightmare.

Pregnancy is horrible. And I’m looking at it again. I was kinda thrilled by the idea of never being pregnant again.

But baby.

I want the baby. I want the baby of my body. But I hate pregnancy. I am so sick when I’m pregnant. I am in so much pain. It is such a difficult process. According to natural selection I should already be dead from this.

But fuck natural selection. Science.

When I started looking for people to date I wanted play partners. For very sadomasochistic sex. Then Noah changed his mind about a baby.

That’s seeming like a dumb thing to hunt for at this point. I can’t live up to that. I… will really not be able to live up to that starting in a few months and it will probably be years before I’m back up to speed again. Shit. Shit. Shit.

I feel like I’m jerking people around and being a terrible person.

I went and had lunch with Daddy James. I wanted to touch base with him in a I’m-not-just-in-your-life-to-use-you-for-sex way. He told me it was ok to keep changing what I’m negotiating for because life keeps changing what I have to offer. Thank you Daddy. He also told me it is ok that I am difficult to put up with. People get other things in trade and it is worthwhile for them.

I don’t see how what I have for trade that could possibly be enough to justify putting up with me.

Especially as I’m about to revoke a lot of what makes me a fun toy. I’m not so fun when I’m not up for play. I’m… a lot more boring. Hey, let’s garden or watch Netflix. woo.

Noah wants me to take a month and date as much as I want so that he can experience the full terror and find out just how bad it is going to be. The kids are asking for us to be home 4-5 days/week with no visitors.

How the fuck do I balance that? I’ve got easily dozens of people I’d like to see who’d like to see me. Some of the activities they want to see me for are high energy and some are low energy and I’m kinda flipping out about both kinds equally. “Hey drive to my house and sit around” is just as intimidating as “Let’s do x super high intensity activity.”

OH MY GOD I CAN’T RIGHT NOW.

I want to I want to I want to but I haven’t got it to give.

What I have to give is very narrow and particular and time limited. Like, why in the fuck am I up at this time of night? Because three hours of sleep is enough, apparently. Fuck.

I feel so sad that I am so inadequate to meet the needs of the people I love.

I am inadequate. It’s funny how nonmonogamy is just a chance for me to feel inadequate with more people. Wheeeeeee

I can’t do/be what Noah wants and I can’t for anyone else either. I’m feeling really sad about that right now. I can’t ever be good enough. I can’t ever do enough. I will never be able to satisfy people or make them happy. I will never be enough.

I feel like I’m in a weird transition. I thought I was transitioning out of intensive parenting into more independence and abruptly… I’m in reverse going back into the most restrictive part of this job and lengthening my time of indentured service. What the fuck am I thinking signing up for thirty god damn years of home schooling.

Twenty years sounded awful enough.

Holy shit.

I was really enjoying the expanded freedom of the Bonus Family. That’s not really a thing for a few years again. I hope I will still get my Bonus Kids sometimes. I hope that maybe the older kids can go for a night or two a month still just a way of having “their” time and space away from being in baby-land. But I won’t want or need a couple of weekends. I’m sitting here with a baby anyway. I’d rather have all my babies around more.

Fuck. This is a huge change. This is a massive upheaval. Why are we doing this?

Because I can deal with transitioning back into the world in ten more years. If the IDB (incest data base) takes me a little longer… oh fucking well.

I want this baby. And Noah keeps saying, “Two?” I don’t know. I can’t commit to that till I get through a third pregnancy. But more than likely if Noah asks me in two years if I want another baby he won’t be able to keep me off of him.

Because yeah. I get quiverful. I get wanting more babies. I get it. I get it. I get it.

I’ve already had one person who is not-breeding say it’s ok if I replace them in the population. Anyone else want to volunteer as well to justify my second kid?

I’m not even joking very much.

Parenting is the one thing I genuinely feel like I am excelling at doing. I’m far from perfect but I adapt and I grow quickly. I see problems and I address them.

I think I could handle four kids just fine. I think it would be wonderful. No Pam, I don’t want to hear your negative Nancy shit. I’m aware that you are now a voice of dissent. Ok. Heard. Now don’t bring it up again.

I feel like such an asshole for being mixed when a friend told me she wanted a fourth baby years ago. Fuck. See, the ways in which I am an asshole always come back to bite me in the ass.

I should have said, “I support you.” I’m sorry. I did that wrong.

I know there will be problems. There will be problems with or without another baby. I asked the magic 8 ball and it is never wrong.

There will be problems with or without two more babies. That fucker was consistent in its answers.

Yes.

“Will there be problems if we have a baby?” Yes.

“Will there be problems if we don’t have a baby?” Yes.

“Will there be problems if we have two babies?” Yes.

I’m telling you. The magic 8 ball knows.

I don’t feel confident in the choices I’m making. A lot of what I can see is that each of my choices hurt other people for a cascading list of reasons. I’m not going to be available for what they want…. and I don’t even know how to say what I need.

I don’t know how this is going to work. I don’t know how any of this will balance out. Between the kids, Noah, me, and all the god damn people I care about how is this going to balance?

WHY DO SO MANY OF YOU BASTARDS KEEP LATE HOURS. THIS WOULD BE EASIER IF Y’ALL WERE AVAILABLE AT MORE LIKE 7-10AM!

Ahem.

Why isn’t everything all about me? Because it isn’t and it shouldn’t be. Even if I am the main character in my story… I’m not the center of anyone else’s story. Not even Noah’s. Not really. I’m his wife. That’s an accessory to his life and story not the point of the story.

I gotta be honest with y’all. When I think of what I’d like it’s not that much one on one date time. I’d like more people around and carefully managing people one to one… is a job. Especially within the framework of 4-5 days/week are just not options I wish that there were a bunch of people who said, “X day works for me. Are you free?” And it’s ok for me to say yes to three or four people because… quite frankly… that means that there is a lot of kinds of attention to give and get all at the same time.

That feels like Auntie’s house when I was a kid. Only no one checked if it was ok to come over in advance. They called and said, “You home?” then they came over. Auntie knew a lot of people. I loved my Auntie and of the people in my family she’s the only one I’d want to be even a little bit like.

She’s honorable. She takes care of people. She gets shit done.

She’s enabling as fuck and that’s something I struggle with emulating too much.

I’d like to have open houses on Friday’s. Some people can bring their kids with laptops and sleeping bags and the kids can have a LAN party before going to sleep. The adults can talk or play games. I’d like to not have to be careful about managing invites or treating it like a “party”.

I like to keep the house company-ready just as a matter of course so that having people over isn’t extra work. Then it is less stressful. Cleaning up for people feels bad.

It’s interesting reading this book on ADD my shrink gave me. Driven to Distraction. Reading it is making me cry because it sounds so much like me. Bits and pieces and here and there. But… it would make a lot of sense. My list of flame outs is long and inglorious. My self esteem is shit (at least in part) because I spent my whole life being told I was bad for the ways I deviated from normal.

My shrink is calling my psych to say, “Instead of an SSRI (which has a proven problem history) how about trying a stimulant?”

I’m excited to have someone case managing me like this. She’s known me for years and her feedback feels very useful when dealing with a prescribing person. I’ve always wanted a case manager.

Really I’ve always wanted a knowledgable pushy mother. Kinda like I am. Deep sigh.

Go be what you want to see in the world.

This biology shit is hard core. I want to be a parent. It’s the most important thing I do. I learn the most from it. I grow the most because of it. I have to or I will be a shitty parent.

I don’t want to be one more shitty parent.

I owe them more than that. Because I made them out of pure selfishness. I owe them every ounce of work I can put into being a good parent.

And I have a lot of work in me. How do I focus it more? What do I want to focus it on? My kids. For a lot of years to come they get the lion’s share. They deserve more than I have to give. That’s a lot of why I want to add other adults.

Beautiful tells me she will feel more free to invite herself over. Fuck yes.

I guess I did something right for once.

The Quiet One is an increasing factor. I don’t know what the fuck. But not saying anything here at all feels like lying because this is part of how I keep accountable with Noah. Fuck. I feel like this miraculous available during the week day, local, oriented towards care taking of children person just fell out of the clear blue sky and I don’t know what the fuck.

I really don’t. Because he has some boundaries that are going to make him tricky as heck to negotiate with in particular ways. It is none of the internet’s business because he’s going to be one who doesn’t want to be written about in the same way as a lot of other people I see. Some folks ask for more explicit reports. Some folks believe they deserve privacy. But there is a balance for me.

I don’t want to be a liar about what I’m doing. For good or for bad.

That road is straight to hell.

Kisses. More kisses. More kisses.

I go through waves of needing to not be hit because I need to not think I deserve to be hit. It’s complicated.

If you couldn’t hurt me I wouldn’t be interested. Danger. Danger. Danger.

Sadomasochism, mental health, chronic pain and calibration.

I am a hard fucking pet to own. Noah and I discuss this in detail. He has spent ten years trying to learn how to properly feed me, exercise me, get me to sleep, and take care of me better than ever before. It’s been hard for both of us.

I am an emotional and physical masochist. Does it turn me on when my back hurts? No. What that means is I have learned how to eroticize kinds of sensation (physical and emotional) that other people don’t experience as sexual. This is good and bad.

Within certain contexts I enjoy being hit fairly hard in the scheme of things. Within certain contexts being degraded will make me orgasm like a geyser. But these are not all the time fun things for me. In the wrong times these sensations can be highly damaging. Only the right people get to tell me I’m a good whore. Preferably after role play when their cock (bio or not) is inside me. Then, it works great. If someone random brings that up… the fur’s gonna fly.

I have been suicidal and self harming for almost thirty years. When I talk about my problems, they are not in reaction to my current life. They did not form in context to what is happening now, but I have to deal with them now. PTSD, for me, means that I have a hard time telling what is past tense and what is current tense and what is future tense a lot of the time. I’m just… trying to be a version of me that won’t be too problematic in all times. That’s rough because what was needed from me as a child is different from now.

I don’t think it is possible to over state the impact of my early childhood sexual abuse on my personality formation. I know I lived with my father until I was three. I know the abuse was frequent before he was kicked out. I know it was every time I saw him after that until about twelve.

My father telling me over and over that I exist to get men off and I don’t have the right to say no…

That has absolutely shaped my life.

Noah and I were talking tonight about “What he can get away with” now vs when we got married. I’ve learned to say no. I used to not say no to anything he wanted no matter how much pain it caused me. It really never seemed important that I was in pain. I was going to hurt anyway. He might as well be getting what he wants.

Fibromyalgia fucks all of this up too. I’m in pain a lot of the time. As I age my joints are on fire more days of the month. PMDD complicates my life. (That’s premenstrual dysphoric disorder for those who don’t know.) It means that for roughly 3-10 days a month my brain would kind of like to kill me. I feel useless, worthless, and like I should die. I feel like I am bad. I feel like I hurt people by existing.

This isn’t about reality or rational thinking. This is pure hormonal/chemical hell. And I’ve done everything that I can do about it. I keep trying new things. It does improve over time. But it is pure shit when it is happening.

I live in a kind of chemical soup that doesn’t want me to be alive very much. I live in a chemical state that doesn’t see much purpose for me.

But then there are the happy chemicals. Oxytocin. Endorphins. Serotonin. I can get them. But it’s hard hard hard hard hard.

Something that is complicated and hard and not fair…

I can do the spike up and down thing pretty easily. Ecstasy and despair are easy for me. It’s being ok I suck at. Noah has helped me make more progress on being ok than anything and everything else in my life. But doing so has worked a lot like a standard antidepressant in that it makes the ecstasy part harder. Not impossible, but more complicated.

Noah and I have very deeply connected sex. There’s a lot of “I see you as a whole person with flaws and merits and I love you for being more than one thing.” It is wonderful and life affirming. It helps me feel like I can climb into a box and be safe. Desafortunadamente (why is this word so much better in Spanish?) that box isn’t able to be everything.

Why do I need more?

Why does a Porsche need more maintenance than a Toyota? It is the result of engineering.

Why am I so complicated? Why am I so hard? Engineering.

I need a lot of connection with people. I need lots of people in a way that is hard for Noah to understand. I think Noah is an actual introvert and I am actual extrovert who behaves like an introvert because of trauma and avoidance.

I fucking need people. I need to talk to them. The kissing and sexing is awesome, but I’d say they are part of less than 1% of my relationships. I need connection. Mostly it isn’t sexual. But good golly the sexual connection is so good at making all of those chemicals I suck at making on my own.

Why do I want to date? Because I want massive injections of oxytocin. Because I want to see you and feel so excited you are alive. Because I want you to look at me the same way. Because I need to see that look on your face because there will probably be minutes between this time and next time I see you when it is very hard for me to remember at all that anyone is ever happy to see me.

What I feel right now is what I have always felt and will always feel. Until it changes. Then that is what I feel and have always felt.

You can see how I might try to stack the deck with experiences that land me squarely in the happy brain chemicals column because when I’m there I don’t have to deal with the depressive and anxious symptoms in the same way. It’s like they went on vacation and forgot to write.

So I had multiple possible kissing opportunities go by without kisses. Internally my narrative around this is melodramatic, stupid, and whiny. “See. They’re done.”

I feel like I should stop bothering them.

I feel like what I am is a bother.

Incidentally: shiny change of topic to drop a cryptic comment at someone from yesterday. When I say that someone is giving me “reminders” I don’t mean that in any kind of negative way. My kids and I give each other reminders. It is a way of noticing someone and saying, “Hey do you remember this thing you want to remember?” Because…. most people suck at that. It is a loving thing to do, in my mind. Let me remind you about who you want to be because that makes it easier to stay on track. Let me remind you that I see you and what you are doing is real and has impact on the world so I remind you of what you need to be thinking about.

I sure didn’t mean it as a complaint or as a criticism or an attack or anything negative. Reminders are intensely positive in my life. But I had two hours of sleep and my ability to explain is uhm compromised at such times.

End of shiny change of topic.

I like to be hit. I crave it like other people crave… whatever the fuck they crave. It’s a powerful force in my life. My absolute favorite is hitting with hands. Punching is such a vicious, visceral, vivacious connection that I feel like it makes me more alive. Punching helps me stop dissociating. Punching helps me feel the muscles and the tendons and the bones in my body. Punching helps me feel alive.

I can enjoy being hit with toys but it is a lot more difficult for me. I don’t process it as connection. It tends to increase my dissociation because mostly it hurts more in a way that I have to escape my body in order to tolerate very much of it. I don’t feel connected that way. I feel like I am a thing that a tool is doing a thing to. Sometimes that is hot too. Sometimes I do want to be beaten until I go away. It is like a vacation from the tyranny of living in a brain that hates me this much.

It feels like atonement for being so bad all the god damn time.

But atonement needs to be a sometimes treat or it means that I am shit and I should spend all my time apologizing for being shit.

Constant atonement means I am constantly bad enough that I need to atone.

That hurts.

That hurts my soul as much as it hurts my body.

I don’t always need to atone. Mostly I need to connect with people who want me to be alive and who aren’t shy about telling me so. Because I’m not so sure I want to be alive. But I don’t want to hurt people in this web more than I want to stop being in pain. Right now the balance is very much on the side that my pain doesn’t matter. I need more reason to believe that. And I need less pain.

The happy chemicals make me feel less pain. Less emotional pain and less physical pain. It’s a virtuous cycle.

I feel so very guilty that even when I’m having sex with Noah basically every day and sometimes several times a day… that isn’t enough chemical in the soup to push me over the rim of the pot and out of the boiling water that wants to kill me.

But adding more people… well… it’s variable… but it does more than anything else.

I have managed to long since get the soup down to a simmer from a hard boil, but I haven’t been able to get out of the pot.

Thank you Noah. That is mostly because of you. It is because of the children you have given me. It is because of the life you have given me.

But yeah. I need more relationships. I need people I can talk to and connect with and feel like I matter to them.

Because being a wife and a mother is not enough for me.

Do you know why I think that sport fucking isn’t going to work out for me the way it used to? Because these days even when I fuck someone at a swing party and intend to not really see them again (and hell they gave me a fake name anyway)…

They end up telling me their real name and coming over for lunch with their whole family so we can talk about life balance and problems and how to deal with different life issues and… we are turning into friends.

Noah I know I kinda wanted to just be fuck buddies with people. I went out looking for that.

FUCK ALL OF YOU FOR BEING SO AWESOME.

But I feel small and scared and ashamed. Because asking for support, asking for connection with these other people feels like it is almost specifically designed to be about hurting Noah. I don’t want to hurt Nah. He is the air I breathe. No, he isn’t every ounce of chemical I need… but he is the basis. He is the start. He is safety. He is the love that reminds me to take care of myself when I am failing at doing so.

I feel ashamed of how much I need him. I would be willing to sacrifice other parts of myself for that safety. But I’ll be down in the simmering soup forever. That’s just… true. One of these days the soup is going to finish boiling me and I will die.

I need more chemicals to raise the water line and get the fuck out of the pot.

I am so sorry I need an amount one person can’t supply. I have no idea what is enough.

I am feeling really scared. I want to reach out and I don’t. I am so weary of being a bother. I feel so much like people “put up with” me.

I’m so sorry that I am so horrible.

I want to be good. I want to be just a source of happiness. But the truth is I’m not. I’m full of sadness I don’t know what to do with. Mostly I try to get enough when I feel it is ok to touch people and can access more of those fucking chemicals I can’t produce on my own.

If I walk in wearing makeup and I walk out with a bare face that means I removed it all because I didn’t want it to be obvious I was crying. Part of the reason I have been wearing more makeup is because I’m trying to control the crying. I know I can’t cry without it being obvious and that’s too public for me. I can cry without people seeing with a bare face. I do it a lot.

I want to stop crying some year. Stop crying. Stop crying. Stop crying you fucking baby.

Why do I want to date? Because I had to marry someone as broken as me. I had to marry someone who has so many pieces chopped out of him that he has huge gaping wounds where we can grow together and meld and heal into a new shape that is one thing instead of two broken things.

But how in the mother fuck do we teach our kids about a happy or healthy or normal childhood? By saying “Be grateful you aren’t getting what we got?” Oh goodness no. So I go date (in very small part) because that way I can find people who aren’t broken in the same ways and ask question after question after question. I get the impression people think I’m weird. Tell me how you turned out the way you did. I like you just fine and if I could manage to interact with a mini human to help them turn out like you… that would be a positive in this world.

I can’t make babies with everyone. But I can take the example of what kind of life experiences someone would bring to parenting and try to bastardize that onto my life. It is variably successful piece by piece. Overall it has been wildly successful.

I learn things from Cupid and Deity about a quieter happiness than I have known. They are very different men but they both come from backgrounds they are basically happy about. Do you know how fucking weird that is in my life? Dating them is almost like getting to have a koala bear accidentally fall out of a tree on your head and so see you’ve proven drop bears exist.

Whoa

My submissive inspires me with his passionate devotion to things. He has picked just a few people in his life to pour devotion into and I admire him. I both love and struggle with the fact that his core kinks are around degradation and “dirty” things. I absolufuckinglutely love that I get to do these things… I wish they weren’t degrading or dirty. I think they are fun. I do them from love. I do them out of service because you want to be treated this way and so ok I’m happy to be in that role for you.

So where does the sadism come into all of this? I am a sadist… but I am more of a service top. I do things because I think the person I am playing with wants/needs to experience them. I like being a guide on a journey. Even more I love being lead on a journey but with every passing year I intimidate people more and I get fewer offers.

The sadists are going to be happier with the people who aren’t physically and emotionally damaged at the beginning. I can’t take what a lot of people like to do on a regular basis. I can take it sometimes. I can take it when I’m doing well. Then I can’t for a while.

And the bubbling of the soup has a huge impact. The more emotionally dysregulated I am the more my entire nervous system flares up.

That’s why I want the kissing so much. It calms my central nervous system down. It distracts it from feeling pain.

And when there are chances to do the kissing and someone doesn’t want to… that feels really super out of proportion huge for me. I’m not saying anyone is obligated to make out with me for hours. Hell. I’m not saying you have to spend fifteen minutes kissing me.

But if you tell me you are romantically interested in me and you have a chance to kiss me and you’d rather not….

I feel that in my body and I feel it for days and I feel so sad.

All of this is complicated by the fact that we can’t kiss in front of my kids. So if we see each other a few times when kisses were possible but didn’t happen and then we see each other around my kids… that’s complicated torture. That’s a complicated thing that feels a lot like how I couldn’t hug or kiss or be affectionate around the kids when they were very small. I could do some but I would freak out if I heard them. It took a long time before I decided it was more appropriate for them to see that folks do those things when they like each other.

I have been good about slowly developing these boundaries and I’m going to keep being good about them. That’s important to me. I came from a place of severe inappropriate connection. I have inched my way towards letting my kids see different actions. But my kids have always seen me hug my friends. That’s just a standard thing. Even long hugs. So whereas kissing feels like it is a big boundary for me… my kids aren’t dumb. They will figure things out.

All of this is also complicated by my general problem with time distortion. I mentioned that in a few ways up-post: living in more than one time at once, feeling like how I feel in this moment is how I feel in all moments… but there is also the problem that when I’m really happy, time flies. I feel like I am getting so much input I can barely take it in. I struggle with feeling like hard packed clay soil. If you dump a deluge on me, it’s mostly going to just run off and not impact the plants. When I am depressed and/or anxious time drags on and on and on and on. It feels like there will never ever be a cessation of pain and god I can’t do this.

I have seriously been hurting most of my life. It’s hard to keep carrying that load.

But I have so much good that sometimes I am able to just sling all that hurt into a rucksack, toss it on my back and say, “It doesn’t matter how you feel it matters what you do.”

I think it is a problem that I associate not wearing makeup with a need to hide crying.

When I’m riding high in the pot and I feel relatively happy for me, then I want to beg someone to hurt me.

Why was it at such a sharp edge when I started hunting? Because I have been so safe for so long. I need the sharp and the soft. I got so much soft. I know it wasn’t fair that I didn’t know how to talk to Noah about being the sharp.

But it’s getting better pretty quickly, I think.

I need to not do anything melodramatic around this kissing thing. But I need to have some conversations. I need to talk about some pieces of this in real time with people.

The not kissing when the kids are around: kosher. The not kissing when the kids aren’t around? No. Not ok. I can’t think of you as someone I want to be kissing and deal with feeling like you don’t want to kiss me.

I had to turn off thinking about the Professor like that. He feels whatever he feels and I have no window into that but his behavior is that we had opportunities and there were no kisses and I need to treat that like “We are not people who will be kissing” and move on with my life. I have to compartmentalize like that or I get my feelings hurt.

He’s still my friend though. I still like him a lot. I will… poke at him less for a while because I’m still in the sticky he doesn’t like me that much stage.

I’ll get over that bit. I always do. It’s ok for people to like me how much they like me. But sometimes I have some sad that I am only liked as much as I am. I need to deal with that sad. I need to stay friends. Because that’s dealing with your shit. Because good grief I’m dealing with a lot of people and if I got bitter about everyone who doesn’t want to kiss me I’d have a shitty life. It’s ok.

But I’ll poke the Professor at a slower rate for a bit. I’m not going away;I enjoy the conversation too much. I just need to do some self management.

Even if I stop feeling like I have the right to look for kisses… I don’t want to stop being friends. I went hunting for friends with benefits. I want friends. I want benefits. Largely, apparently, in the form of kissing.

Wouldn’t it have been god damn handy if I could have phrased it that way in like March.

I’m going as fast as I can.

I want more hitting and I want more being hurt. But I want it in between kisses from someone who very much likes me. That’s complicated.

And I want to write about Sweet Boy. Because that was awesome. But I’m closing in on four thousand words and my arms need me to stop soon. He’ll be a lengthy story.

In three and a half hours we leave to go see the doctor about Noah’s vasectomy reversal. Holy shit.

How is this all going to work? Fuck if I know. But I guess we’ll figure it out. It’s that or die and I’m not ready. Even if I want to. I’m not ready. There is so much left to do. I’m not one to sit around when there is work to be done.

Do you know what is the part of our family culture that I am proudest of? “We are workers not shirkers.” When my kids say this, when Noah models it and repeats it… oh my soul glows. Yes. I read this hilarious book called How to Raise the Perfect Children Through Guilt and Manipulation and it is as much a memoir about her childhood as it is written by a parent about parenting. I don’t want to do anything how the sports-fanatic-Catholic author does things in her life…. but I do want to set a strong family culture the way she talks about. I do want to indoctrinate with my ideals the way she talks about. Yeah. Like that. Only something different.

Cause that’s what I am. Like you. Only something different.

Today is the 18th anniversary of Tommy’s suicide. I can’t say I miss you. I am glad you don’t have to be hurting any more. Self immolation. What a way to go.

This is why I like to schedule things at my house.

When it all goes to pieces, I still have chores to do. One of the difficulties in trying to be someone who organizes get togethers is… you have to deal with other peoples schedules. Whether I schedule in advance or at the last minute this sucks.

Yesterday we were supposed to have a playdate with five families. All bailed at the last minute. I think one is in labor (good reason to skip the park! Good luck!); another has to wait on a bureaucrat who is making her life hell (good golly that sucks. Good luck!); another forgot it was election Tuesday and oops she always works (ok, this one kinda bugs me a bit); another was just running behind and she could have showed up two hours late if we waited (no, I’m not gonna); last but not least one family said they were technically happy to show up… with hand foot and mouth disease–that cancellation is my fault.

But I was on my way to babysit other kids and see another family. Picking up a highly communicable disease on the way seemed rude.

Nobody did anything wrong. But it still feels hard.

Sometimes people ask me why I’m not more willing to drive for park playdates these days. I stop laughing eventually.

Because driving far from my house for a park play date is a variable experience at the end of a hard experience for my body. Nope.

Last time some of these folks missed a playdate I scheduled over near them and they asked if we could come back the next week to see them.

Funny how folks don’t generally say, “Know how we broke our plans? How about if we offer this super convenient for you alternative?” That’s not how it works. I offer to come to them and do a bunch of work and they expect me to just do it again. Because clearly it wasn’t that hard the first time so just keep doing it. But it’s too hard for them to come to me.

Ok.

I would like to take this moment and say “Thank you” to all the people who come visit me on a regular basis. Thank you for helping me feel like maybe I do have some value to someone.

Last night Noah and I had it out a bit more. This is going to be a rough year. I’m not writing them down here but I sure went down my list of done-me-wrongs. I did that after running four miles because I was afraid I would otherwise do something drastic and awful.

That’s like healthy progress, right?

It was only a kiss, it was only a kiss.

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What does it mean?

How do I fill my bucket without hurting Noah? That seems to be where we are stuck. Yesterday a solid 8 people asked me why I was wearing braces. I begin to understand Mitrian’s anger and frustration. I tell people because I type too much. They ask why. I say because it is better than screaming at people. They say, “Yes. Keep typing.”

I’m so glad to hear that more people agree that me harming myself is superior to me impacting other people with negative emotions. Now we just dicker about methods.

This became absolutely crystal clear to me when I was talking to someone about cutting the other day.

Cutting actually heals pretty easily in the scheme of things. I am permanently crippling myself in the name of self harm that is more socially acceptable. Because the only place I’m actually allowed to exist is here. Everywhere else is a compromise.

I’m having huge feelings about my date with Cupid not including any intimacy. I’m not upset that we didn’t play. I’m not even cranky about not having sex. He’s not a life support unit for a dick. But we didn’t hug or kiss. So I feel like I didn’t really fill my bucket. And that’s the date I get this month.

I mean, I feel like an asshole for feeling that way because I came off an excellent group date with Noah and Deity and playing with the Sweet Boy.

But that was my only option for one to one serious adoration this month.

Noah and I do adore each other sometimes, in the middle of being cranky and fussy. Right now it’s hard. I know we aren’t actually usually cranky and fussy but I am today and so it feels like always.

What is it that I need here? What isn’t being met? Why do I feel so empty and fussy and sad?

This is a brutal period. I am soaking through pads and that hasn’t happened since I was postpartum. I’m a light bleeder.

I feel like…

I feel like that stone that was sitting heavily in my breast got too heavy and burst through the lining of my body and fell through my organs and out my cunt.

I cannot give that gift away. It is not mine to give. I cannot make that promise. Probably not ever. I wanted to. I can’t. That is not a promise I know I can keep and not being a liar is more important than making anyone feel better for a moment. Even for many moments. Not if it comes at the cost of a lie.

I have been trying to see if I could find a way to promise that I would not end my life early by choice. I have been trying to see if I could find a way to make it bearable to carry this pain no matter what because it would be too selfish to leave the people who love me.

I cannot make that promise. I am selfish. And I hurt. I have hurt all my life. I have never been free from pain.

Some day I will have a bad day. That day will be too much for me. Yeah, there probably could have been more good days on the other side of that bad day. Probably. But I don’t know where my limit of carrying bad days is. That has to matter.

Do you have to be ok with it? No. Do you have to like it? No.

All that matters is that on the bad days I am alone. I will carry what I can carry until I can’t carry it any more and then I will set it down.

I need to not give a shit that it might hurt you.

Can I do this?

Can I say enough of what I want to say without getting in trouble. That’s the dance.

When you are a person who acts there are going to be times when you fuck up. You will do wrong. That’s not… avoidable. It just isn’t. You will step on toes. You will cross boundaries.

That’s life.

The trouble is in repairing those mistakes and moving on. The trouble? Maybe the meat of life. Because I don’t know about y’all but I don’t get through a day without a fuck up. Some are huge and some are tiny, but they always happen. Life isn’t about when you fall down, it’s about how and when you get back up.

In the last period of discussion things have been… more tumultuous. Thus a lot of my radio silence. I don’t want to document some of these bounces even a little. That’s hard for me. There are a lot of reasons I don’t want to document a lot of what I’m thinking and feeling. Despite popular opinion there are lots of boundaries around what I write. I only have a few friends who are smart enough to show up at my house, grin, and say, “Ok tell me what you can’t write about.” Those people hear the best stories.

I know that the pendulum is swinging hard and I don’t know where the center will be when it stops. I hesitate to comment on just how fucking far the pendulum is swinging. Folks get alarmed.

Part of the reason I usually try to be honest and document the most extreme moments is because very few people who live with this disorder are safe enough to do so. By and large… I am.

But I’m not safe enough to get into all the nitty and gritty of this. Even I recognize my points of vulnerability.

Why am I not safe enough? It isn’t because anyone will hit me. It isn’t because my reputation will be destroyed or anything like that. What reputation I have is… there. I’m unstable and that’s a well known thing. Hard to tarnish that reputation. What are people going to say, “Oh look the mentally unstable person is unstable.” News flash at 11: water is wet.

Hi. Love you too.

That’s kinda the joy of having documented this shit for so very long. MY BEHAVIOR IS TO SPEC AND AS ADVERTISED AND ACTUALLY I’M IMPROVING. So don’t complain too loudly. (It is weird trying to stay present with the feeling that as much as I don’t like this much swinging… it is an improvement over the past. It really is.)

Am I annoying? Well yeah.

How do you go through life knowing you are a monster and manage to not abuse anyone? I’m trying to find out. What is the difference between being an asshole sometimes and being abusive? I’m told that a lot of it is about patterns and frequency. Everyone loses it sometimes. But you can’t lose it in the same way over and over and call it a mistake. If you do the same thing every time a trigger happens… that is possibly abuse or leading to it. Depends on what you do.

I have a wide constellation of coping methods. I’m trying to get better about how I use them.

I feel very ashamed that as I move through life I use my reflection in the mirror of my children as the primary judge of whether I’m doing ok. They are happy, secure, they feel loved, they feel like bumps in life mean a few moments of discomfort and not tragedy.

They learned that from me. I must not be as bad on the outside as I feel inside.

How cryptic can I be about something and still say it. It is amazing to me what is considered threatening from a woman and to be avoided and what is considered acceptable from a man and he is fine for being that way. Just fucking amazed over how these standards play out.

That said: thank all the stars in the heaven for easy going slutty folk. I’m not one of you. But I appreciate you. I appreciate that you don’t mind that in between showing up for the sex I am going to be off-stage HAVING BIG FEELINGS about everything because that’s just what I do. My feelings by and large aren’t your problem. Even if you read them in my journal, my feelings aren’t your problem. If my feelings distress you, stop reading about them.

And for the love of toast don’t tell me extensively why you stopped reading. Please. I beg of you. Just go quietly into that good night and let me wonder.

I already have a lot of voices in my head narrating what I should and shouldn’t say because I hurt people by existing. I don’t want to add your voice.

If you ever feel specifically hurt by a topic and you want to email me and say, “Hey Krissy. I love you and I know this is awkward but x is really triggering for me. May I ask you to get better at tagging x so that I can look at your tags before deciding to read an entry so that I can skip those pieces? I would appreciate that.” My response would be to fanatically never miss that tag again. Or, you could try: “Hey Krissy. I know that I am not the person you are writing about, but I am attached to person you are writing about and I’m having feelings. Is it possible for you to maybe tone down ______? I would really appreciate that.” My response would be: Of course I will respect your feelings. (I know I am not consistent with tagging. I’m not… writing for the whole world. If you are a close friend asking me to make sure I hit a specific tag is a small thing for me to add to my brain. Trying to really be serious about tagging and warning my writing for any possible trigger that exists… that’s a lot of pressure. But if you are a regular reader and you want to say “Hey x is a thing for me” I can totally get better about marking x. I just… fuck it’s a lot of pressure to warn about everything I write about. But I get avoiding things. I do it too.)

I have a lot of people I don’t write about for various reasons. I have a lot of people where I can allude to some things and not others. I’m ok with boundaries. But they need to be stated. I interact with hundreds of people. If I try to intuit all the unspoken “Please don’t” boundaries I will freeze into inaction and never ever write a word again.

I’m thinking really hard about writing. Whether it is more positive or negative right now. Part of the reason it is hard for people to detect that I have boundaries at all is because they are so variable. I have them in such different places for different reasons and some of those I can articulately explain and some of them are… a mystery to me. They just are.

I like what I learn from writing. But can I pay the cost for it?

Shame is complicated

Well. I am starting to set up conversations with people. It’s going to take a few days to schedule all of them. Scheduling is a moving target. And I’m trying to figure out how to build the wave. Looks like the first chat will be the easiest and least stressful. The next scheduled one is the one I’m most anxious about. Then I don’t know where the rest of them fit in yet. I need to leave time for crying after these.

It won’t be someone else’s fault I’m crying. I do it from stress.

I’m scared. I feel like I still… know my boundaries when I run into them and have to cut to stay “ok” in my day to day life. I don’t realize until I’m way way way over capacity “Oh I should have stopped a while ago.” Then what do you do? Because if you cut to cope because you are over capacity PEOPLE ACT LIKE THE WORLD IS ENDING. OH NO. LET’S THROW EVERYTHING IN THE AIR AND CHANGE EVERYTHING BECAUSE EVERYTHING IS WRONG.

Or maybe I was a little over my rev limit?

Fuck. I don’t know.

I feel bad that my ability to cope is so limited. It is a lot bigger than it used to be, but I still have limits.

It really complicates things that interacting with children (and their uhm questionable fucking ability to respect body autonomy) changes how I can handle adults. And that is so variable and it feels so incredibly unfair. Like, if Noah had a date scheduled after the day/night I had with the kids yesterday…

Oh god I would have flipped out. But when you are dealing with other people you need to schedule commitments and keep them. So my boundaries with other people aren’t allowed to be fuzzy and squiggy like that.

But my life is fuzzy and squiggy and variable and I am not someone who can manufacture consistency for another adult’s sake.

I have a hard enough time providing consistency for kids. That is my limit.

I have a hard time being patient and giving and loving with adults when I’ve had 12+ hours out of the last 24 with a kid screaming in my fucking face and hitting everyone. One of the kids had a hard day this week. It happens. These are tiny little people who have a lot going on with their sensory systems. There are days they are just fucking overwhelmed and they are obnoxious as fuck to deal with.

At the end of that I have no patience to give to grown ups. I really don’t. And that’s not fair. I feel like a fucking asshole but if I am activated that many times in a day I literally just can’t turn around and give to an adult. I will flip out and start screaming and breaking things.

I need to go hide away from people after that. Because I’m frazzled as fuck. I got through it without being mean to the kid. I didn’t scream. I wasn’t unduly rough. I didn’t punish harshly. I did enforce a metric fuck ton of time outs. But that seems appropriate and useful. Stop hitting people. It’s not ok.

I’ve seen a bunch of kids go through phases like this. It isn’t about a kid sucking or being bad. It’s a hard phase and it takes patience, love, and correction correction correction.

I get so tired.

I feel like an asshole playing the “traumatized body/brain” card a lot. But the reality is that my central nervous system is shot. I have an acute stress disorder. These things are noticeable strain. I do have limits. Things that activate my emotional system… I can only be calm through so many. Once I get scared enough… I’m not physically capable of thinking and processing the way I must in order to act like a fully present adult. My range of tolerance is wider than average (according to the shrinks I’ve been seeing for a long time) but it isn’t infinite and I start off so much more distressed than average.

I don’t want to take things out on people because I am moody and variable. That means that mostly I assume to defaulting I should offer nothing sustained at all. Because I might fail.

So far Pam is the only sustained once a week dinner guest who can actually deal with my emotional variance and the fact that sometimes you show up and I’m screamtastic and fussy and… no fun.

Everyone else stops coming.

And Pam is leaving the state. Eventually. She keeps threatening. We’ll see.

When I feel ok I have a lot to give. I have patience, love, energy, tolerance… when I don’t feel ok I feel like a bank vault. You don’t open that easily or for fun. It’s fucking hard and takes a sequence of codes and… then only take out what you fucking have to what the fuck close that fucker already.

This is why I don’t want “polyamory”. I’m not good enough at being consistent enough to be a dependable part of a group of people like that. I feel ashamed of myself, but it is true. I have very good friends who sometimes want to have sex with me. And I love them a lot. I will move mountains for my friends. When I can.

When I can’t… I fucking hope you have other support people too. Because I will fail you. I give you what I have to spare. That is what I can give.

I have signed on for being the sustainer of my children. I have signed on for helping to sustain Noah, with the strong caveat that he knows sometimes he has to catch himself. (Hey–he can’t always catch me either. Seems fair.) I have signed on to be a consistent source of non-continuous sustaining for my Bonus Kids. I’m one of Their Grownups. I like that. I like that I did manage to find someone who thinks I am worth the trouble of coming to because their kids need someone like me.

I’m grateful I managed to find folks for that. It wasn’t looking like that was going to work out. It was looking like I was not worth that much effort from anyone.

I’m really grateful things have gone this well for 6 years with my Bonus Kids.

I would never ever ever ever ever play with or sleep with the parents of my Bonus Kids because I can’t fuck that up. That’s like shitting in the waterhole. It’s really stupid long-term.

I fuck up a lot of sexual relationships. I fuck up a lot of non-sexual relationships too… but I fuck up sexual relationships faster. I run hot and cold and that hurts people.

Even I need to understand some boundaries.

I know many dozens of non-breeding long-term polyamorous adults. I have never been capable of the emotional consistency I see them enact. That’s bothered me my entire adult life. That is part of what reminds me of how broken I am. I know so many people who can do it. Who can be consistent and dependable in their emotional reactions.

My emotional reaction to thing A is impacted by thing B and thing C and thing D and thing E and I don’t fucking know how that will go on any given day.

I’m more predictable and calm than ever in the past. How come this progress never ever ever ever feels good enough?

Ok, I just thought of a piece of why Noah dating is so difficult for me…

I always know, every day, that at the end of the day I have to handle the extent of my emotional variance on my own. Noah helps a lot more than anyone else but he has limits. His manufactured cheerfulness is part of what he does for me. That consistency of affect helps me more than words can say. I calibrate off of him. I try to match him. I model after him. When he isn’t here and I am flailing… it’s hard. Even if he can’t sit down to process with me for hours, being around him is regulating.

If I am going to leave more space in my life for not depending on him to be physically present and I know that he is leaving me to go do something fun with someone else…

I need to lock down hard on not depending on him. Because I will resent the fact that I will sometimes have really shitty days and he will be out having fun instead of helping me. Because I built a life that was very near my carrying capacity and then I added shit and sometimes I get really overwhelmed and… I don’t have enough help. Getting less is hard.

I do encourage him to go do things with friends. Because I feel guilty as shit that he doesn’t have much of a life. He works and has the social life I bring to him, mostly. I don’t know if he’d be more motivated to seek out more of a social life if I provided less of one? I do invite a lot of forking people over. He’s not just hiding at home with his family or working. But not much is of his initiation.

But dating is… different. I feel bad about that but it is.

It isn’t fair that I don’t really believe someone can treat me like I’m important and be seriously in love with someone else. I think people can fuck their friends and still be nice to me, sure. But be really in love? Not really.

Love means so many things. What is love?

I will lose time and support in that equation. Because love may be infinite but time is not. I’m doing fairly well… because I have the level of support I have. If it decreased I would… have a hard time.

If I have to spend yet more time alone with my kids regulating myself… that has a cost. The road trip demonstrated that to me quite clearly.

I wasn’t all that nice by the end. Not really. The kids were so glad to get home.

Both kids have commented a lot recently that I’m doing better. They have individually and collectively commented on the fact that I’m not screaming anywhere near as much as I used to and that is really nice.

I’m scared to rock this boat.

I’m scared that being selfish with my energy and only wanting to give it to my kids like this means I have no business pursuing nonmonogamy because I am just using my friends and I’m not offering good trades.

If I’m going to do this… I need to get more comfortable with canceling going forward. I can’t pay the cost of doing something I don’t want to do in the moment any more. And that’s complicated.

I’m not dependable enough and… that makes me feel like I shouldn’t be doing this at all. Maybe swinger parties. Other than that I’m too much of a selfish asshole to date.

fuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuck

This is part of my transactional shit. Noah and I talk very explicitly about what we trade. What kinds of energy expenditures we each need to receive. What are our priorities and which can be dropped when things get tight?

I don’t have enough to trade other people. Not really. I have “what I have going spare today” and often that is so little.

The only consistent front to Noah dating that I can manufacture consistently is space. I can’t promise closeness. I can’t promise loving reconnection. If I have to cope on my own then I need to fucking cope on my own and that is messy and hard. Because mostly how I cope is to be pretty fucking hard on myself. That is how I have come this far.

I did not get this far on compassionate self acceptance. I got this far from being a fucking dictator with my body who doesn’t give a shit what I’m feeeeeeling.

Just work, bitch.

But Noah really wants me to be sunny for him. I can’t do that when I’m coping on my own. It is variable and inconsistent and happens randomly. That’s how it has always been. He is spoiled by how consistent I have been able to be while bouncing off of him for hours a day.

That’s from you. That’s from modeling off of you. When I lose you…

Noah teaches me how to be nice. I can hear it in his voice. When he errs towards nastiness it feels like an instrument being played off key and I instantly mention that he’s harsh. He stops, gets this weird look on his face, and tries again.

I think that is a lot of what has allowed me to be as stable as I’ve been in the last ten years. He works so hard to model it.

When I lose my model I fuck up so much more. That doesn’t feel like a fair burden. And, I know this is bullshit, but I’ve had a hard time with how much he works. I’m not supposed to feel like that is a choice to be away but that’s been hard. I’ve had to be very conscious and deliberate around not being an asshole to him over that. It’s not a rational reason to be mean to him and I’ve had to work on it because it is triggering to me.

It has taken a lot of time and effort to be truly supportive and not kind of an asshole about how much he works. I think I’m pretty good now, but it wasn’t easy.

Noah is the person who makes me feel safe. That’s not fair. I know I should “feel safe in myself”. Whatever. I don’t. I never have. I spend a lot of time feeling like I’d like to vibrate out of my fucking body to get away from myself because I am the problem. I am the one who brings so much pain on myself.

I am the one who can’t behave consistently enough to be worthy of love.

Maybe if I were someone who could say, “Today is a bad day for a date… you should reschedule” I would be able to handle him dating without wanting to scratch his fucking face off when he comes home all excited and I had a shitty day with a side of shit salad. But I am not capable of doing that kind of thing. I’ll put my head down and tell him to do what he wants to do and then I’ll need three days away from him because I hate him so much.

It isn’t fair. Or rational. Or whatever. I know.

I have never had a time in my life when I was not giving to other people pretty much at the extent of what I had to give. I’ve never had a time when I was just… idling. I’m tired. I have hard days with this caregiving crap.

Noah is tired too. His job isn’t easy. He comes home to us.

I’m sorry I am not good at letting you have other people in your life who are more dependable and worthy.

That’s something Noah brings up a lot. I’m really insecure about the fact that everyone he has wanted to get involved with since we got married is just… so mellow. He brings it up really frequently how irrational I am because these are incredibly non-threatening people. They are not drama.

I’m the problem. It never comes from someone else. Just me.

But he also doesn’t want to deal with the fact that giving him space to go be with people who are not worthless pieces of shit means that I am going to spend a few days hiding to deal with the fact that I don’t really like being the problem, the drama, the variable one who just can’t get her shit together.

I feel embarrassed that I fucking exist.

Just stop crying about things that shouldn’t make you cry you stupid, whiny bitch.

None of these people should make me cry.

Being alone makes me cry.

Then why do I need to go be alone once he comes back?

Because I had to hold it together in front of the kids and I need space to recover from that facade. I can’t model off of you when I need to react to you and I have not been allowed to do so even a little bit all day. I needed to pretend all day that I was fine and everything was fine and I don’t mind lots of extra alone time with the kids, sure why not.

I have to pay the piper for that later.

And I’m not supposed to take it out on you. That’s not fair either. I can’t let my tone of voice get shitty. So I need to be alone. In order to not take my emotional variance out on you I need to be alone.

I’m told that my “yelling” by having a harsh tone counts just as much as when I escalate in volume and start screaming.

So yeah. I need a lot of alone time.

Even though I don’t decompress very well alone. I can’t decompress in the presence of the person I am feeling activated because of. I can’t use you to calm down when I am upset because of you. That’s what I mean when I say that it is losing my safe person. If I’m crying because I had to spend more hours manufacturing sustaining cheerfulness alone because you wanted to go fuck someone else… I can’t be in a room with you. I just can’t.

I know we are already talking about several steps down the line from this. I know.

I feel like I should have some idea of what my feelings are given the conversations I’m going to have soon. Fuck my stomach hurts.

I don’t have enough to trade. I have no right to even be having these discussions.

I feel like shit.

Luckily the first conversation will happen this weekend and will actually be the lowest stress one of the bunch. I need to finish scheduling them. Oh golly.

*head desk*

If only I wanted to fuck fewer people this would be easier. Or Noah. Either of us, really.

Something occurs to me: a lot of this comes down to… I don’t ask for additional support on the really hard days. I just don’t. You have to just show up and see that I need it and provide it. Or it will be invisible to you. If Noah is going to be present less, he will see a lot less. Which will be massive in my life. That will be a huge reduction in support. Because I will not be capable of asking for more support in other ways. I just… that’s a thing. That’s a very known thing.

It all comes back to being my fault. Everything would be fine if I were less fucked up.

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.

Good grief I am insecure.

You know… it would be super awesome if in some decade of marriage Noah and I got to the point of being able to say, “We need an epic 9 hour processing day because I HAVE FEELINGS” without the awful screaming. That’d be great. But this is like fight number 3? 4? 5? since we got married. So as bad as it is that we scream the way we do sometimes (and we are both assholes) it is rare and we apologize profusely and get through years of processing afterwards. So it’s not great. But it is unfortunately kinda effective?

We’ve been talking all day. It’s 5pm. We have not been apart for a solid 10 minutes today.

Yeah this whole “I don’t want to follow rules” thing is at an end. We gots rulez. Rulez and rulez and rulez.

I have this horrifying habit of not knowing where my boundaries are until I see them in the rear view mirror. This is a distinctly different problem now than it was earlier in my life because these days we are experimenting with people I have deep love and affection for. That means fucking up is way higher stakes.

There is absolutely no one involved in our lives right now who it would be ok for me to hurt with my flailing. No one.

Fuck.

That’s complicated. Because my boundaries and limits are squiggy and weird.

Like… I don’t want either of us to have a date in the house again. It’s not that I’m mad at the person who came over. I’m not. But I kinda wanted to cancel my date yesterday and stay home and mope because that was just where I was and I didn’t feel like I could because Noah had a date and… that’s not great on a lot of levels. I went to a date when I really wasn’t in the mood and I wasn’t nearly nice enough to my date and at the end I had a meltdown.

Seriously dude. Don’t ask if you need ear plugs to have sex with me. That’ll make me cry the whole way home.

I mean, I’m not overwhelmingly mad at you either. But I’m not going to be able to shake that off and go back to fun time. I can’t.

I’m really sorry that I’m so sensitive. I know I’m a baby.

But I’m 34 fucking years old and I think the chance of me getting over that hot button this decade is at zero.

Also: let’s say this plainly… I’m a selfish piece of shit. I’m dating people because without having sex with more than one person… I don’t really get off. And that *sucks*. That sucks for me and it makes me really resentful of Noah long term because he has no such trouble. I don’t know why I’m wired this way but I am. I have put a good solid college effort into trying to be compatible with monogamy and you know what… it doesn’t work. I just stop orgasming. It’s awful. This is a fact Noah and I have talked about a lot. It’s a problem.My therapist has been tracking this. It’s a problem.

But Noah isn’t having the same problem. So why in the fuck does he need to go off and date?

That’s what my selfish piece of shit self says at least.

So Noah is going to have one date a month. At a party. Because when Noah goes to our friends’ houses to have sex that means I then have feelings about going back to their house and that is not fair at all to our friends.

It isn’t that I need to be the only one touching Noah’s dick. That’s not it.

I’m weird about houses and personal space. I don’t mind him fucking people at parties. Not whether I’m there and not when I’m not. I don’t know why this works this way for me but after a couple of months of trying things this time and years of experience in the past….

I feel comfortable saying I have 0 issue with group sex with both of us (even in our house). I have a small problem with party sex I’m not involved in as far as I don’t want to sit and watch. I have a huge problem, apparently, with sex at peoples houses. Which makes me a fucking hypocrite because I don’t mind that I do it.

I was frankly shocked that Daddy fucked me. He hasn’t in over a decade. I didn’t expect that at all. I didn’t say no and I’m not upset but I didn’t go to his house expecting that even a little. We’ve had a tease relationship for over a decade. So I didn’t really stop and think about how I feel about having sex with him in a house where my children go. If I had thought about it hard in advance…

I feel very uncomfortable about the fact that Noah had sex in a house where I take my kids. I’m not mad at him or the person he had sex with. I just…

Now I’m going to think about that. And…

I rarely know what my boundaries are until I see them in the rear view mirror.

I know it doesn’t matter that they had sex and my kids go to that house once a year. It’s not a big deal.

Only it makes my stomach hurt a lot.

I have been emotionally unstable my entire god damn life. I have to take that into consideration when I decide what boundaries are appropriate for my life. It isn’t likely to just evaporate now. I need boundaries that allow me to go through life without feeling like I’m going to puke. (Especially because I just god damn started a medication that has a side effect of nausea and I need to be able to notice that.)

I don’t think anyone did anything wrong. I had not asked for any limits in any of these areas to begin with and not a single person broke a rule or was rude or bad or anything like that.

I just have these feelings. I’m not saying this is rational.

It’s really weird. I genuinely don’t mind Noah having sex at parties. It doesn’t make my stomach hurt. I kinda walk by the scene once or twice to wave and establish that everyone involved still likes everyone else and it’s cool.

God Noah playing with someone on my couch makes me cry and cry and cry and cry. That’s where I cuddle my kids.

(I’M NOT MAD AT YOU dear friend who is reading this.)

But I would be freaking out more if it had been in the bed. Yeah. Not in the house.

I had a hard time moving into this house. Noah bought this house for hunting. A whole parade of women came through here and that has been pretty hard for me. It took years before I stopped crying about just being the latest slut in the house. This is a thing.

I need it to not be in the house. I’m weird. It’s not that anyone is doing anything wrong. It’s not that I don’t want him to play with the people he’s playing with. Shit, he couldn’t pick nicer or safer or more awesome people. I really like the people he’s playing with.

I’m sorry I am such a baby.

I don’t think anyone did a thing wrong. I don’t think anyone should be in trouble or… I just had feelings I didn’t know I was going to have. Big feelings. The kind of feelings that make it hard for me to be stable and calm and normal. The kind of feelings where I cry a lot for a long time.

It’s not your fault and I’m not blaming anyone. This happens to me. This is my life. This is about me and my brain. But I need to manage it. And Noah has to live with me. He wants me to live for a long time. He has to make choices that reflect where I start melting down if he wants to keep me. Whether that is fair or not fair. What is fair?

I’m sorry I’m unstable and insecure. But that is kinda as advertised at this point.

Also: Noah and I are going to try to go to parties more often together and when we go together he is totally free to play with friends. He’s just only going to make sure he goes to one alone. This means we will only have one of us out of the house one night a week. It was really sucking having us collectively gone two or three nights in a week on dates. That just feels yucky right now. That’s too big of a change from what things have been. Hell, I haven’t been back from the road trip long enough to want that much space from Noah. Even if the dates are nice.

A lot of the kinds of trust Noah wants from me… with hypnosis and M/s in the future… that requires a level of trust that is very hard for me. I am literally not set up to be good at trusting like that. That kind of trust is broken for me.

But he wants it. Which means that the pair of us have to work on figuring out how to build it. And that means limits that may not seem “fair” because we have very different needs and very different reasons we are doing all this.

There is no fair. Just like there is no deserve.

There is what you can bear.

I feel really sad and scared. I don’t like that I need to ask Noah for these limits. But I need to if I am going to be able to build the kind of trust he wants me to build. I will not be stable with him having dates like this. I never have been. It is unlikely to start now.

These are the safest and most awesome women possible. It isn’t that I am insecure about the people.

I’m just… a selfish baby.

We are both taking a lot of comfort from the fact that even though we had a huge fight and said pretty awful things… neither of us at any point even a little bit felt like “I don’t want to be married.” The worst it got was “I need a few hours in a room away from you.”

That feels good.

We are insecure bastards. I’m glad he is finally admitting some of his points of insecurity. Much like Beyoncé, the Queen, I need him to show me that I can hurt him. So that I can stay.

Fuck that album is going to be huge in my life. Lemonade is everything. If you haven’t watched it, stop what you are doing and go watch. YOU ARE NOT DOING ANYTHING BETTER WITH YOUR LIFE. JUST DO IT.

ok?

If you’re all “But I don’t know how” come to my house and you can watch it. I bought it. I’ll watch it hundreds of times. It’s ok if you are with me for one of them.

We spent a long time talking about Noah’s place in the hierarchy of my self destructive habits. It’s good that we are honest about that.

One of our new rules is that only Noah can cut me. We had quite a day. We managed to get through our proposed desired come-in-all-holes date… which is frankly shocking given how I woke up. I didn’t think I’d be interested in sex. Then he spent all those hours talking to me and trying to figure out what we both want.

Ok yeah I’ll suck your dick. And then you can fuck my ass. Then we can take a shower. Then you can hurt me really really really a lot and then fuck my pussy. And then later we christened the first of May in the back yard.

Yup. That’s a good day.

I don’t have any fresh bruises but I have lots of old lovely bruises still fading. (God damn Cupid.) (That was meant to be in a positive sort of way not in a damn you sort of way. More like hot damn. Ahem.) Then I have lots of cuts. I have marks from the clothespins. The caning wasn’t hard enough to leave a mark. That’s ok. I got no warm up. On purpose. Because any little girl who will speak that rudely to her Daddy should get a caning with no warm up.

Meaning I asked for it.

Because man atonement is a thing. Which totally doesn’t excuse my abusive behavior.

It’s not ok to scream at people like that. So we made some specific agreements about how I am going to handle my behavior in the future when I am that upset. We don’t like the agreements we made, but we talked it out. It’s not ok to scream like that. I am less ok with it than he is. Which kinda bothers me. He isn’t mad at me for screaming at him. I think it would be easier if he were mad.

Fuck.

Why is life so complicated?

Uhm. A lot else happened. Holy shit this was an eventful day. We talked about so many insecurities and paranoias and fears and wants and hopes and needs and coping methods and possessiveness and sharing and…

My hands is done. I wrote this during meals. That’s the only time I did much other than pay attention to Noah today. It’s been an epic 14 hours of talking. Sex didn’t start happening till 12:30 or so. I’m ready to go pass out now. I took the Gabapentin like half an hour ago. I feel like I’m walking into a wall of haze…..

Boundaries on and off screen

I am somewhat hyperaware that someday my kids may grow up and read this. It could happen. That means I actually… edit… maybe more than you might think of my life here. I’m nervous about how I present Noah. I talk about him in terrible ways sometimes. I also very carefully avoid saying a lot of terrible things about him.

I do not want sides taken. I do not want back and forth bickering in public. I do not want my children seeing the depths to which we sink when we are being fucking petty. Why not? It’s complicated.

We haven’t fought like this since we closed our relationship. Fighting like this is why we closed our relationship. Because we didn’t think we could stay married through fighting like this.

But that was when we had babies and it just wasn’t ok at all for me to have emotional variance because of my relationship with Noah. I had to be regulated because I was teaching emotional regulation just about 24/7.

That was kind of a difficult thing for someone who is as dysregulated as I have been all my life. I look at my children and feel that I succeeded. Clearly they got the lessons they needed developmentally when they were needed. I did it. I stayed calm. I taught them how to handle conflict and big feelings without flipping out.

I did it.

Which means I can have more things in my life that cause my feelings to fluctuate. Which is fucking tricky.

Nonmonogamy is going to be hard. There are a lot more insecurities here than either of us are really having fun talking about.

What does safety mean? What does connection mean? What are we working towards? What do we want? What is the purpose of sex in our relationship? What do we do for one another versus for ourselves?

I sure wish that these conversations could come with a little more sleep for me. Out of the past three nights I’m now only down about one night of sleep. That’s improving…

But we talk all night long because we can’t talk in front of the kids.

I am not sure either of us are being fair. Yeah, I’m being an asshole. I’m not in denial. I’m not trying to say that I’m being fine and he’s the asshole. I’m really not saying that.

I cheated and broke his heart. He thought he was going to get to be my one and only forever and ever amen.

He’s allowed to be absolutely furious about that.

I know.

I’m trying very very hard to not get into done-me-wrongs. I will talk about what I know I have done wrong. I don’t need to get into done-me-wrongs.

It won’t help. I hiss those often enough in person. It’s not like I’ve forgotten the list. I just don’t need to write it down.

How do you fight in civilized fashion when you are a compulsive over-sharer? Like this. You say what you did wrong and talk about being angry without placing blame. I’m not saying that Noah is to blame for my feelings. He isn’t. I mean… a couple of his particular phrase choices were infuriating… but whatever. I’m being a right bitch in this fight.

How do you build towards a vision of self that may not be what your partner wants? How big do you want your partner to be? How small so you can feel bigger? I don’t know.

Who is pulling whom around on a chain.

I don’t want to leave. That’s part of the reason I have no particular reason to bad mouth Noah up one side and down the other. I don’t want to leave. Even though I’m angry about some stuff right now… that’s life. I flipped the canoe of our life over. There are going to be some feelings we have to deal with. I’m ok with that. I’m not enjoying this process but I see it as necessary.

I’m not afraid of conflict.

I’m afraid of not getting my needs met.

I’m afraid of not being who I want to be because I am afraid that someone else doesn’t want me to be.

I’m afraid of making myself small and unthreatening and never doing anything with my life again because I have decided I don’t deserve to ask for what I really want.

What does necessary even mean?

I’m sure I don’t know.

Am I fucking everything up permanently? Well. I guess we will find out. There is the non-zero possibility.

It is hard when I feel like I’m absolutely the bad guy here. I’m the one insisting on change because the status quo wasn’t working. I feel like a fucking asshole for not making it work. For not deciding that it was just good enough because that was all I agreed to this life.

I did not promise sexual fidelity in my marriage vows. Yeah. I slammed the door four years ago when we were having screaming fights about lying and … shit don’t rehash it. It wasn’t well done.

I feel like everything bad must be all my fault. I feel like I am a monster. A selfish, disgusting monster.

Day 38. Still no bleeding. PMDD means that right before I start bleeding I tend to have intense spikes of depression and anxiety. My suicidal urges go through the roof. This is a well documented phenomena.

I need to be something other than a cum dumpster who can’t cum. This just… isn’t working any more.

I wish I didn’t feel so fucking bad about that.

Sometimes people ask why I write such whiny melodramatic stuff. Aren’t I embarrassed? I’m documenting what living with an acute stress disorder is like. The kind that results from brain damage. If you think I should be embarrassed that says more about you than it does about me. No, it’s not fucking smooth. Yeah I’m a lot of fucking drama. Lots of ups and downs.

That’s what brain damage does. Pieces of it are absolutely my fault in an ongoing way I really don’t deny that. But I’m also trying to deal with my problems. That means I’m going to flail and do things that don’t work sometimes and I will document those fuck ups so I don’t forget and have to make the same mistake over and over.

I’m not writing for you.

I’m writing for me.

Promiscuity and permission

I had a thought. And even though I’m trying not to type much this weekend I want to write this down.

The difference between me doing what I’m going to do and feeling good about myself and me doing what i’m going to do and feeling bad about myself… is mostly about how I’m perceived.

I’ve been a big slut chasing sex since I was in preschool. Rampant promiscuity is part of my life.

This time… I’m coming home to a safe home. With a partner who grins at me and who wants to hear every filthy detail. He’s concerned about my safety and my rate of adding partners. He’s concerned about me stepping outside my carefully vetted pool because in the past that has been a mixed bag for me.

He’s not telling me to stop fucking my friends.

He’s not sure what he wants and that is a slow process we are talking about a lot together. He’s not entirely sure what he thinks will be sustainable in terms of my behavior but we are talking.

There is no shame.

I need to say that again because it is so important: There is no shame.

There are uncomfortable feelings. There is a tinge of sadness on both or parts. We wanted the fantasy of monogamy. We liked it. We wanted it to work.

It didn’t work well for us. We are going back to stuff that has worked well for us.

But we are doing it from a framework of a very happy and supportive marriage. We like each other. It is a little weird going back to dating from the point of view that I’m blissfully happy at home and I love my marriage… I just do better with a variety of sex partners in my life. I like bouncing off of people.

It really helps that since I started fucking around Noah is inspired and he’s been fucking me more and better than he has since the first year of marriage. We are getting close to our pre-kids sex life.

Which is fucking awesome.

We are getting back to the sex life we had when I was dating Spot and…. I can’t remember who else. It’s embarrassing how bad I am at remembering who I dated when. I can remember that I dated someone, but I need to really think about it to figure out which period of my life. (Actually… it may have been just Spot and Noah because I was teaching. I was real busy then.)

“Which slut period did you overlap?”

But I remember Spot. He’s one of the few who made it to 9 months. I liked Spot a lot. He was… a nice break from the assholes I had been dating. Ultimately he was too nice for me and that’s ok too. I’m one of those terrible people who likes assholes.

I need you to have brick wall boundaries because I am going to throw myself at them. I don’t want them to collapse. Usually only assholes can do that. Assholes know “I go out this far and this is where I stop. Get the fuck off my wall.”

But this is what I was thinking about this morning. Permission. Noah gives me permission to exist in a way no one else ever has. I’m not sure it would have occurred to anyone else. I’m not sure anyone else would look at me and think, “Oh there’s a person quaking with fear because no one has given her permission to act how she wants to act.”

Snicker.

But it’s true. I do. I do what I’m going to do anyway. The difference is whether I feel ashamed of myself afterwards for acting in a way I think I’m not supposed to act or whether I feel fine because I was told I am fine.

Noah does that.

Noah gives me that.

He tells me I am fine.

Punching is so awesome.

Last night was a punching heavy night. I was punching a lot and then I got punched a lot. Life is fair sometimes.

I played with the Professor. He plays with a lot of new people and he is good at helping people explore sensation. I told him I didn’t know what I wanted to be hit with because I genuinely don’t know what I like at this point, but I know I’m on the thud end.

He brought an assortment of toys and hit me for a while with them before switching to punching.

I liked and hated most of the toys. I loved the punching. Loved the punching. Got off on the punching. That was fabulous deep thud. That rocked all the way to the center of me.

Surface pain on my skin is harder. The flogger was a lot of surface area of skin. I feel like I like/enjoy/can tolerate floggers exponentially better now than I could when I was younger (I am apparently getting older and less sensitive) but they are still hard. I feel panic when a large amount of surface area is hit at once.

And holy shit for shoe shine do I dislike any hits on my low back. Mother fucker. That’s always been true.

Once, when I was 19 I was on a date with a friend and he was passing me around a party. I complained so much about specific kinds of hitting that he found a marker and made a big X on my low back and wrote “NOT HERE” and on my ass he wrote “NO STING”. Then he had way more people hit me.

It went better at that party after that.

I feel like things have drifted but those are still fairly accurate warning labels and I should figure out how to explain them better on my own.

My low back has been problematic since early childhood because of a vicious assault. No, I don’t like it when I’m hit there.

It isn’t sexy. It isn’t easy to process. It hurts.

Thank you for the lesson.

The flogger on the upper back wasn’t like that. That was horrible and painful and mean and… hot. I felt like if that came with a story I could really get into suffering like that. As a stand alone sensation it wasn’t my favorite but I could see the appeal. Which is a huge shift for me. Thank you for the lesson.

I felt kind of ridiculous for liking the Nerf thing. I shouldn’t like being hit with a Nerf toy. That’s perverted.

It was a great warm up toy. Oh man. He did a warm up. It was like magic. I remembered correctly! Warm ups are awesome! Yay warm ups!

He was very good at the reassuring-from-the-back-hug. Some tops nail that and some… don’t. He was really good.

Last night was a night of SM like I used to do. Lots of violence and my genitals were not in play at all. It was a stark reminder of how much I have drifted. Oh yeah. That used to be my life.

It isn’t any more.

I have a tremendous quantity of feelings to process. I’m going to put them in this nice neat box I have here and deal with my day. I don’t have any other play scheduled after today and that will stay true for a bit.

I need to process these bits. I need to integrate what I need to say differently. I need to think about what to say about play for it to be more of what I want.

I need to figure out more about what the fuck I want. I have inklings and that’s not good enough. I need to think about this.

Why don’t I feel comfortable talking during play sometimes? I really don’t. I don’t feel like anything I could say would be ok. So I don’t say much. I don’t like that. It isn’t useful. Just making noises isn’t good enough feedback.

I feel like I need to figure out the difference between playing to suffer and playing to have fun and playing to get off. I think they are different. I think I need to figure out the limits on the suffering I can offer at this point.

My low back needs to be off the table. That’s going to need to be a hard limit. Fine, maybe someone else won’t be damaged by light hits there. I can be. It needs to be a hard limit for me. I don’t need to talk about it and I have to figure it out before I bottom again because… someone is going to cripple me.

Words. Words are hard. I like typing. I like typing till my hands cramp and ache and this is so definitely my current favorite form of self harm.

Words are harder. Words are scary. Speaking is hard. I need to work on more scripts. Ugh.

Just being able to make the noises is huge progress for me. I know it doesn’t seem like that to people. I know it just seems like some obnoxious thing I do. It has been hard for me to be in my body enough to connect with what is happening. I have tried hard to do that.

I have spent a lot of my life dissociated. I go back and forth between dissociation and hypervigilance so that I either don’t know what is happening around me and to me or I’m freaking out about everything near me.

It’s fun.

The hypervigilance has improved dramatically over the last few years. I have consciously worked on a number of my tics and they have improved. I still don’t have a comfort zone but I don’t feel crawl-out-of-my-skin-anxious as often. I am also far less dissociated. I can’t be and take care of the kids. I have to be present. I picked the high-intensity version of parenting. I can’t phone it in much. They won’t let me.

Maybe my comfort zone is fucking people. Every other part of interaction is harder and more complicated. It’s why I’m pushing people for fucking with play.

I think. As I look in retrospect at my behavior over the past few weeks. I think that is what is going on. Ok. This is why I talk to myself. Because I’m trying to figure out why the fuck I do what I do.

I think it is healthy for me to sit with the discomfort that comes from people not asking for access to my genitals. But it is hard.

Ok maybe I am lying. Yeah. I do have a comfort zone. I didn’t feel uncomfortable at all when Cupid or Deity or Daddy were fucking me. Not when I fucked my submissive. Not when I picked up a random at a sex party.

That felt comfortable. Other aspects of our interactions are not always comfortable for me and I stick them out anyway. But…

It’s part of why I’m pushing so hard for kissing. Kissing feels kinda like that but more available in public.

Ok. Well. I’m figuring some stuff out. This is kinda fucked up. I need to find some way of feeling comfortable that doesn’t involve soliciting sex. Well… ok, I do feel comfortable around the kids. Most of the time. Except when I’m triggered.

So it isn’t only during sex.

And it is variable with Noah. Sometimes I feel comfortable and sometimes I don’t. We’ve had a lot of sex over a lot of years and we often do it whether I am up for it or not. Because that is our deal. I’m not sorry. But it means that I have had mixed experiences of the sex.

I need to update the users guide again. Hilarious. Well… this is a changing time.

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.

Hunting lessons

Exhaustion is a real thing. When I’m over tired I can’t read tone to save my life. I’m whiny, over-sensitive and I’m going to spend a lot of time crying. It’s not about a person saying something… it’s about being tired. I didn’t respect that yesterday. Given how much… pushing it I’ve done on sleep stuff lately I need to build better boundaries around this. Don’t respond to messages when I’m that tired.

I wrote about 7 pages in a word document yesterday. Notice how I’m not posting it? I don’t think I was even a little coherent. I was tired and scared.

I live with a kind of existential dread most people can’t understand. On one hand I’m one of the asking-ist people you’ll ever meet. I ask and ask and ask for things. On the other hand I live in mortal terror that I will rape someone again. That I will ask for something and someone won’t feel comfortable/safe saying no and I will be an evil monster as usual.

This is complicated for me. Because if you can’t say, “Hey do you want to do x?” and get a yes/no answer…how the fuck is life supposed to work?

I don’t know.

Folks tell me that I’m doing a good thing by giving people opportunities to refine their boundaries and decide what they do and don’t want.

I feel scared all the time that I’m on the verge of hurting people. I feel like I should withdraw a lot because I’m pushing too hard. Noah says this may be a bad time to assume that my bad reading of one persons tone means I should stop asking other people for things.

For some reason he seems to think that individual humans should be judged on their own behavior.

Whatever.

So it isn’t going to be a rule (because how the fuck well do I follow rules?!?!) but I think it should be a guideline to not respond to ambiguous messages at all when I’m tired. Once I’m not tired I can say, “Hey I’m not sure I’m getting your tone of voice here. Can you clarify?” Cause wouldn’t that be useful.

I don’t feel like I did yesterday. Glorious 8 hours of sleep. I hate sleep deprivation.

Many folks in the scene have been asking me, “Oh do you remember Mistress ___? She’s coming around more again.”

Goody. She likes to tell me that I’m a bigger bitch than her because I don’t handle sleep deprivation well. Can’t wait to run into her. weeeeeeeeeeee

I’ve gotten off overly lucky this hunting phase. Things have been going too smoothly. I’ve been getting too many ‘yes’ answers. Too many people telling me I’m doing it right. When I hit a bump it feels… big.

It isn’t. I’m going to get over it. But yesterday I couldn’t read tone and I spent a lot of time crying. Like I do.

Sleep. Dear goodness, sleep.

When I was a kid my sister used to tell me, repeatedly, that if I have the same problem over and over it is my fault and not other peoples fault.

I push boundaries. I do it globally. That makes it seem to me like it is all my fault and I’m a bad person. It means that when I feel spooked that I came too near a boundary with one person I want to globalize it and use it as a reason I should stay home and stop hurting people.

I want to use that experience as evidence that I am a monster who is unable to stop hurting people. I want to use the hint of possibility that I pushed too hard as evidence that I should stop asking for anything from anyone because I am not deserving.

I want to tell everyone that I know they don’t really want me and I should stay home.

I kinda got yelled at for that yesterday. Not “YELLED AT” but forcefully reminded that it isn’t my place to tell people what they think or want.

Yeah.

I’m sorry.

I feel bad for wanting you. I feel like I am placing a burden on you that I shouldn’t be placing. It isn’t fair. It isn’t appropriate. Just because I want you that means nothing about what you want and I don’t know what you want.

I don’t know and I’m not sure I’m good at reading people.

Noah makes sure to do over the top physical gestures to highlight how delighted he is by me constantly. Because otherwise I walk through my life feeling like an anvil of disappointment is about to drop on my head because I am not good enough to please anyone.

It isn’t fair to need people to be so demonstrative of their approval. I should just believe.

But I don’t. I’ve had too many years of wanting to die because I am not enough. I do need to feel like people really want me to be there.

Or I should go home and snuggle my kids. Because my kids really want me to be there.

I’m not saying I want to die right now. I don’t. I’m doing alright. I feel… whiny not suicidal. That’s fantastic progress for me. I feel sad and anxious and like I really want to figure out how to do this right some fucking year.

I want to stop messing up negotiating. I feel like there is no valid excuse for fucking up this way at this stage. I’m not a kid messing up out of ignorance. I’m a grown up who fucks up because I’m sloppy and I don’t dot all my i’s and cross all my t’s.

I feel ashamed of that.

But I don’t know how to find a happy medium on the herpes shit. It is… complicated. So many people have it but the few people who don’t know/haven’t been specifically told they are positive… it’s a thing. Should I tattoo “I have herpes” on my forehead so I don’t ever fuck up that bit of negotiating again?

Kissing is a big deal. My Owner didn’t kiss me. I’ve dated other guys who wouldn’t kiss me but who would allow me to provide some kind of service (sometimes sexual and sometimes not) for them.  I can’t do that any more. I just can’t. Maybe that section of the users guide should be rewritten.

I like kissing and I know I’m diseased. I’m sorry. I feel bad about existing in this dichotomy but here I am.

Thank you for not caring, Noah.

Kissing feels connecting and bonding. Kissing feels like the difference between just being an object and being a person having an intense shared experience. I need kissing at this point or I really shouldn’t be playing with someone at all.

I’m not negotiating this well and I need to change that.

Lessons hurt. I hate learning lessons. Fuck opportunities for growth. FUCK THEM WITH A POGO STICK.

Do you know what would make all of this easier? If I were less fucking hypersensitive. But if that were true in one area I’d be a lot less sensitive in other areas.

I don’t actually want to stop being who and what I am. I like being sensitive. I like that I react strongly to my perceptions of peoples feelings. That often goes well. But sometimes I’m tired and I read something wrong.

Yeah. That happens.

Uhh… I do better in person. Where I can look at facial expressions and eventually feel comfortable asking millions of questions. I do have to warm up to the questions though. I am actually kind of shy at first.

I don’t want to scare you off. I want you to volunteer stuff. No one ever tells me enough about themselves.

Oh they tell me more than enough about their hobbies. I want to hear about you.

I know it is kind of weird how much I actually like people. But I’m not playing. I do.

I don’t want you to be in a room with me so you can act out my fantasy. I want to be in a room with you so I can see you more fully developed as a character of your own. If you talk fast the whole time I get more of a picture of who you are. (I like turns to talk too. Don’t worry. I know how to talk fast.)

I’m high maintenance. I want understanding and that mandates intense communication. I’m not comfortable. I don’t exist near people to feel comfortable in their presence. That is not how life goes for me. I am not comfortable.

I am with you because I want to understand you. Because I find you compelling. Because I want to know you. Because I want you.

I may not understand what that means. I probably don’t. I will ask for things. I wish you would ask more so that every step of verbal negotiation didn’t come from me.

That is true so much and it scares me because when I am always always always the leader how do I know I am doing what people want instead of dragging them through things they may not be completely on board for doing?

Trust people to be grown ups?

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

Sorry, gotta catch my breath.

Phew. Laughing that hard is dangerous. I’m going to bust a rib.

People laugh at me when I say “when I grow up” in reference to my future research. They ask me if I’m grown now. No. I’m not.

don’t know many grown ups. And I don’t know many people my age or younger. I chase an older crowd and I always have. Guess what. Most of them are not grown up. I mean, they are grown. They are “adults”.

We are all fucking up and growing.

We aren’t done growing up.

I know… a few. They are inspiring and intimidating as fuck to me.

Hands hurt too much to go into that.

Hunting lessons…

Wanting is hard. Wanting is scary. The rejection isn’t the scary part. The scary part is the terror that I will hurt people. I will hurt people. Not because I will hit them (though I will) but because I will say the wrong thing or do the wrong thing or ask for something in a way they don’t feel comfortable refusing and they will feel regret and I will feel shame.

That’s gonna happen.

That is part of hunting.

That fuck up. It is inherent. Other people minimize their risk by looking for one lifetime target and calling it good.

I… like to learn lessons. I have so much to learn. There is so much I want to know. There are so many situations I need to be able to have absolute control over my reaction no matter what physical or emotional stress is going on that I have to perfect this.

I have to. This is going to be necessary for me as a grown up. I am going to need to have 100% control over my reactions. I will need to know “I don’t open my email until I’ve had at least 20 hours of sleep out of 72.”

I need to know myself.

Noah didn’t think the messages sounded the way I read them. It took a lot of explaining and whining and telling back story before he went, “Oooooohhhh… ok. I can see how you read it that way.”

So it was a stretch that was only possible because I’m so awesome.

God I’m ridiculous.

No. I just have a long and complex story and I’m reacting as if all if it is true in every moment of every day and those filters are better and worse based on factors like sleep. Ahem.

Other people can handle sleep deprivation. Great for them.

I can’t.

But there is so much fun to be had in the middle of the night.

I have five solid nights in a row where I’m staying home and getting sleep before our next night out.

But then a different party is the next day.

Fuck. Ok. I need a break after that. I iz at capacity. Ow. I found it. Noah told me he thought I would.

I wanted to see where it was now. I found it. Ow. I’m old.

Why didn’t I want to go to a dark place? I don’t know. It wasn’t that the pain level was beyond my capacity. I never got near an 8. I just…

I don’t know.

It didn’t feel that way. It didn’t feel like that was what was appropriate in the setting? I don’t know.

I need help going on a journey. If I’m going to stand somewhere and just… do what I do… that…. uhhhh… varies.

It is wildly unpredictable.

I also have a really hard time with feeling like I am topping from the bottom. Noah and I have had a hard time figuring this out. I… don’t know how to gracefully lead as a bottom. I suck. So either I shut my fucking mouth and smile as the top decides what is going to happen next or… things get kind of awkward and tense and I spend the rest of the scene feeling bad.

So yes. Sometimes I don’t know what to say.

Even me. I get tongue tied. It is true. I feel like a jukebox waiting for someone to pick a song to play. I don’t know what to say. I don’t have any idea of what would be pleasing. I have such a short window of time in which to try to be pleasing…

I’m afraid of picking wrong.

It isn’t that I’m trying to make up a story to tell. It is that I don’t know which version of myself to start with. There are so many. The order in which I present them matters. It can lead to increased intimacy or it can lead to things like, “I need you to stop telling me about your background. I don’t really want to know.”

This is why Noah and I spend so much time during sex talking about previous sex we have had either with one another or with other people.

I know that I will only learn how to read these things better by running into these walls at full speed so I see all the signals all the way up to long past when I “should” have stopped so that in the future I will understand that danger signals much earlier and have a stronger need to distance myself fast. I know this is “safe” practice.

But I’m so tired of being disappointing. I’m so tired of having people forcefully shove me away because I am wrong.

Asking, wanting, desiring always means risk. It always means possible rejection or unmatched interest or pain.

Always.

Is it worth it?

Even though I’m still tired and even though I still have turbulent feelings…

Yes.

All of it. All of them. Every lesson. Every experience. I’m not sorry I asked. I’m sorry if me asking was done badly. I’m sorry if I asked in a way that did not support people telling me no when they should have or if they really wanted to in the fullness of time. I’m sorry that I will keep making mistakes.

But I’m not sorry enough to stop.

I want to learn this.

I will make mistakes. So will other people. I will get up. I will try again if they are game.

I want.

But first I want more sleep.