May 232014
 

In the mirrorI’m such a hypocrite. I spend so much time talking to people about advocating for their own pleasure, and yet when it comes to my own relationship, I take the easy way out. You know, the path that leads to resentment and separation. I know it can be better than this; I even know how to get there, but it feels too hard. Despite my best resolve, in the moment Joel asks for sex, I either avoid it or I follow the path of least resistance.

The other day when I got out of the shower, Joel was getting ready to get in. I had just spent some time bring myself to orgasm, so I was feeling pretty sexy. Joel stood there watching me do my morning routine, slowly stroking his cock. It immediately put me off my high. It felt like he was being voyeuristic in a creepy way. I didn’t say anything because I figured it was my trigger, my problem. He’s entitled to get himself off.

But then he said, “Are you just going to watch?” and I was confused. I couldn’t think of anything to say. At all. He suggested that he would come a whole lot faster if he beat off while going down on me. (Is faster better?) Oral sex seemed like it might at least feel good (and provide lubrication if he decided to fuck me).

His tongue on my clit was indeed pleasant, but I was still in a place where I hadn’t really consented. I hadn’t come to this place willingly and joyfully. I hadn’t said no either. I kind of wanted to be making love, just not like this. Despite all my knowledge and skills and advice to others, I still can’t figure out how to create the sexual relationship I want with Joel. I have tried to explain what I want, but I hold back in the places where it really counts.

I don’t like this about myself. I hardly ever give in to fear, but I am really scared of rejection in my marriage. It doesn’t seem to matter that these quick bouts of maintenance sex also feel like a rejection. I don’t want to fight. I think that if he doesn’t want the whole of me now, he will never be interested. Yet, if I can’t open the door to sexual awakening for my own partner, how can I pretend to know anything?

I don’t know anything, except my own experience. I feel so blessed to know myself fully as a sexual being. Maybe I don’t need to have that mind-blowing kind of sex with Joel. Maybe what we have is just fine for us. Okay, maybe it’s ok for him, because it really isn’t okay for me. I want more in this relationship or not to have sex at all. I love him so much that I want to share wonderful sex with him.

We had a very intense hot connection when we first got together. Joel chalks that up to new relationship energy, but it gives me hope. At some point, we had the energy I’m wanting. It’s still there. It’s still ours. We just have to figure out what we want our relationship to look like now.

We had a conversation recently where I realized that we define sex differently. I’m pretty sure that he means penis-in-vagina, pounding away sex, whereas I mean all of the things that might increase intimacy between people – sharing a meal, talking about intense things, lots of touch or massage, looking into each other’s eyes, kissing, oral sex, anal play, sensation play, bondage – anything that deepens and broadens the connection and sensations between you. By Joel’s definition it’s highly unlikely that I could have sex for 4 hours. By my definition, some days I never stop having sex. I am a very passionate person, but if I didn’t have other sexual relationships, I would think that I just wasn’t that into sex.

The other day in the bathroom, he did ask to fuck me, and I agreed. It was physically fine, but emotionally kind of like any chore that I might sign up for, knowing it would help him and make him feel better. He came, then got in the shower. My orgasm, or lack thereof, never got mentioned.

I’m tired of feeling like a blow-up doll, but I have to accept responsibility for my part in being stuck in this dynamic. I need to be an active participant. I’m sick of giving in to sex once a month when I want to feel passionate all the time. I feel trapped by all of the things we share – our family, our home, our history. I love him like crazy. I care about him deeply.

I tried to explain that I want to have sex WITH him, rather than him having sex AT me. I think he gets it. Now it falls to me to follow through and show him what I want. Can we sync up our sexualities? Can our relationship still grow and change after all these years?

We’re going to figure it out.

(Edit: the conversation continues with No flinching and Keep talking.)

Feb 222014
 

Bad habitsI need a cup of coffee almost as bad as I need you.
Bitter and dark or sweet as honey,
I miss the taste of you on my lips.
I want the rush of you in my body,
But with you gone, I have to settle for another cup,
And you’re not here to know.

If I stayed up all night, would you know?
I roam around the house thinking of you,
Fingers dancing round the edges of my cup
Remembering orgasms golden like honey,
And the comforting weight of your body.
Up late and alone, I touch my empty lips.

I pour whisky and bring it to my lips.
You don’t like it when I drink, I know,
But I need you like this burning in my body.
I’m all afire, desiring you.
You go down smoother than whisky, Honey,
And I’d rather have you in my cup.

Restlessly, I put down my cup,
Words to that song you hate on my lips.
Well I’m playing it loud now, Honey!
I can dance better than you know.
I would grind like this for you,
Bouncing, gyrating, and sweating on your body.

Why aren’t you here to satisfy my body?!
I hate being discarded like an empty paper cup.
I gave so much of my life to you.
My fingers find the pearl between my lips,
There are some things I still know.
One, is where to find honey.

And ohmygod the honey!
Pleasure ripples in waves through my body
Revealing mysteries I’m momentarily allowed to know
I pour coffee and whisky into the same cup
And bring a fucking cigarette to my lips
For a moment, I don’t even think of you

Then I realize – Honey, this is my cup,
My music, my pleasure, my body, my lips.
Perhaps my biggest bad habit was knowing you.

Feb 092014
 

AnxietySometimes I feel disconnected in my own body – alien, alone, a bit numb. As much as I long to feel pleasure, it’s elusive. My mind spirals around with worry and I can’t calm down. If I do get in a situation where I might orgasm, it takes longer to get my brain aligned with my body. I feel like a failure. I’m sure that my partner is frustrated with my slow responses. Even if I am self-aware enough to know that my anxieties are running away with me, I still (on some level) wish that my partner would just make it better.

Anxiety has been taking a turn running my life. It happens every so often, for reasons that are not clear to me. I am not anxious about anything in particular. In fact, I feel fine except that I am paralyzed by non-specific fear and worry. It’s just one of the many annoying aspects of PTSD. My relationships are harder to maintain. Some days I need to take Valium just to make love, something I want and look forward to. Actually, in the past week I’ve needed Valium just to talk with friends.

Being anxious is odd. It’s in my body, not my emotions. This isn’t the kind of stuff that that wakes me at night, unable to sleep because I’m worried about the kids’ education or paying the bills. This is fight or flight level primal reactions to stimulus that is no longer present. When I am standing in the shower with my heart pounding in my throat, my vision blurred, my breathing fast, my chest tight, rocked by dizziness, and my thoughts slowed – then I must remind myself that these were logical reactions years ago, but not now. It doesn’t help much.

What years of therapy has helped with is my ability to retain a logical adult part of myself to help deal with the here and now. I like to think that most people I interact with have no idea how hard these patches can be for me, but I can’t fool the people I am closest to. It is pretty much impossible to get intimate if your body thinks you are under attack. So, medications can help. Just working through the panic attack until I feel back in control can work. And recently, Harold decided to join me, startling me right out of that space.

The most effective technique for me to be able to still have sex, even through anxiety, involves a mixture of things. If I feel something coming up when I want to be intimate with someone, I let my adult voice step in and let the scared child part know that they are seen and heard, but that this is adult time. I agree to look at the anxiety after I’m done. I take something like Valium if it seems necessary, but mostly I don’t like to take drugs. Most importantly, I establish a connection with my partner. Not only am I not alone with my anxiety, I am loved and cherished. I deserve to feel good and to be happy. This is mine and it can’t be taken away.

Some of you will not understand what a victory this is, but sadly, many of you will.

I love sex, it’s a blessing, but I work hard to keep clear the pathways to intimacy and bliss. Pleasure is everyone’s birthright. Everyone has an innate right to feel pleasure in their bodies. It can’t be stolen. I’ve spent a very long time feeling tainted and broken somewhere underneath, but I’m done. Anxiety? You’re on notice. It’s over.

Dec 232013
 

Evoë on datingI never thought I’d see the day, but I actually met a man I’m interested in dating on OKCupid. Unfortunately, I don’t know how to date. I’ve never really done it before — what I’m used to is letting friendships evolve over time into sexual and/or romantic relationships. As a result, I’m finding my current interest rather excruciating. Getting to know each other is fascinating, and playing with our mutual attraction is exciting, but we haven’t earned each other’s trust yet. I’m tearing myself up inside over this guy with whom I’ve spent exactly 90 minutes in person.

I’m really taken with him – he’s intelligent, very physically fit, good looking with a gorgeous smile, spiritual without being religious, a good communicator, and deeply respectful. I was impressed when I asked him for more photos and he didn’t send me a cock shot. Perhaps my favorite thing is that he’s very sexual without seeming desperate or sticky. He wants a chance to explore his sexuality and this appeals to me on many levels. I get so much pleasure out of helping people open up and showing them new things.

But not having established trust is getting to me. I don’t know how to find a good balance. My desire wants to just go for it, make a sexual connection, and use it to build trust later. The rest of me is freaking out a bit. I’ve been through date rape, and I certainly don’t want to put myself in that position again.

I sense that he’s not being totally forthcoming with me. I can’t find him in a Google search, which may mean that he’s being private online or it may mean that he isn’t who he says he is. He told me that he wouldn’t want me to blog about him because he likes his secrecy. I’m violating that request right now because it’s essential to me to be able to talk about my feelings and my process. I’m thinking about being alone with him, vulnerable and intimate, without really knowing who he is. How do I know he can be held accountable? What is a reasonable amount of faith before you have a solid foundation of trust?

He tells me he’s married, been married for over 20 years. They’ve just recently opened their marriage. This could be a very good thing for me, since I am so busy with my family that I have very little time and energy to give to another relationship. But here is my warning bell: he and his wife evidently have a don’t-ask-don’t-tell policy. He doesn’t want to meet my other partners and he won’t be telling his wife about us. He seemed confused by me trying to explain that I tell my husbands everything. Actually, I am unlikely to share his private confessions, but I would certainly be telling them about my emotional experience and the overall shape of the relationship. I don’t want to have to keep one part of my life separate from the others, and I doubt I’m even capable of it. I am profoundly suspicious of anything that must be kept secret. How, for example, do I know that I’m not causing harm to his wife?

There is also the body hair issue. After it became clear that we are attracted to each other, he asked me if I shave below the neck. While I’ve shaved in the past (body, head, everything at one time or another), I am currently really enjoying my body in a natural state. I love my hairy armpits. I trim my pubic hair, but I won’t be getting a Brazilian any time soon. I think I look ridiculous with a bald pussy and I hate going down on someone all stubbly. I don’t find shaved genitals attractive in general, but I do respect people’s right to do things they like with their body.

For him, however, this seems to be a deal breaker – he says he can’t get turned on if his partner has body hair below the neck. In his favor, he has wanted to know why it seems important to me not to shave. He is respectfully waiting to see what I want to do. Do I want to modify my body to make him happy? Don’t I want him to like me the way I am?

I suspect he may want clandestine sex. An affair. I understand the allure of something forbidden, a kind of exciting shame-fueled sexual adventure. I understand the attraction to the fetish-like taboo of secretive sex, but this is so not me. He says that he’s interested in my passion for normalizing sex, so I’m curious to see if he’s willing to step out of his comfort zones to meet me. But how far should I go to meet him? Where is the right balance between pleasing a prospective lover and holding your own boundaries?

I’ve been enjoying our interactions – mostly texting or sexting. I’m having fun! Sadly, this week is super busy. I had to cancel the second meeting we had scheduled because I am so overwhelmed with holidays, work, and child wrangling. Since I broke that appointment, I haven’t heard from him. Maybe he’s giving me space in this crazy chaotic time. Maybe he’s given up on me. Maybe, like me, he’s trying to figure out how to trust.

I’m not sure how to do this dating thing. I’ve had sex with strangers in the heat of the moment, but never this negotiation of preferences and boundaries, dreaming of steamy relationship potential while trying to navigate all the risk factors. Figuring out public transportation in a foreign country has caused me less stress than this. And yet… I want him. I want him to meet my challenge.

Jun 192013
 

Breast tie portraitFunny how things stop seeming kinky when I do them all the time. Squeezing Harold’s balls seemed shockingly, outrageously, horrifyingly kinky when he first proposed it to me. Now I knead his testicles pretty much any time we are sexual together. It has become normal. In fact, I would say that we hardly ever do anything kinky any more, but I know that other people think we do. I am beginning to see how the definition of kink would change from person to person and even for the same individual over time.

Today we did something that felt kinky. Actually, a couple of things – we tied up my breasts and filled my cunt with chain. That added edge of knowing that I’m doing something that pushes my boundaries is so sexy! I find that there is a fine line between hot and not when working with kink, so communication becomes super important. I need to be able to let my partner know when things feel more uncomfortable than provocative, but hovering between the two can really turn me on.

I’ve had my breasts tied up before, but it didn’t do very much for me, other than seem weird. For some reason, it was just the right thing to do today. I tied them myself, bending over at the waist and wrapping each breast tightly, crossing over in the middle. The effect was to make my breasts firmer and to stick out more. Having all that blood trapped made my skin so sensitive. Harold couldn’t stop stroking and tweaking. Every touch sent a rush of heat to my cunt.

Tied and happyIt was pretty easy to bring me to orgasm the first time. Wow. I might have been able to orgasm with breast stimulation alone, but we added oral sex and then a vibrator. I came so hard with Harold’s hands on my breasts! As the sensations subsided, the ropes around my chest suddenly didn’t feel right any more. My breasts were also turning blue. It was time to unwind the binding, but I was still pretty turned on.

After such an amazing orgasm, I was wet and I wanted something inside me. Our backpack of sex toys yielded up a length of chain that we have tried vaginally a couple of times. (You can read about it here.) Basically, we didn’t start until I was warmed up and we used a lot of lubricant to insert the chain, one smooth link at a time.

Initially, the only sensation was Harold’s fingers pushing the chain into my vagina. Then involuntary spasms of pleasure would clench my internal muscles around the chain and the resistance would make me spasm all over again. I started experiencing a feeling of fullness and the links started to feel pinchy going in and we halted there. (I’m getting good at stopping before things get uncomfortable!)

I can’t describe what it’s like to have my cunt full of chain. Physically, there is a sense of heaviness or fullness that is both comforting and erotic. Intellectually, although I know that we are doing this as safely as possible, chain registers on my danger meter. There is some part of me wondering what the hell I’m doing. Isn’t it just plain wrong to put foreign objects in your cootchie? Emotionally, I take all of the raw sexual energy of those thoughts and transform it all into blindingly hot sex.

SensationsI don’t know how else to explain. I was nearly coming the whole time Harold was inserting chain. Once it was in, I used a vibrator on my clit and orgasmed right away. Harold slowly pulled the chain out (about 5 feet worth) as I came and the orgasm lasted the entire time and then some. Having chain in my cunt is the most fabulous thing ever. And it’s kinky (for the moment).

May 172013
 

Sexually transmitted diseaseI’m freaking out. I was awake at 4:00 a.m. this morning, obsessing about whether or not I might have a sexually transmitted disease. I’ve never had a STD before – probably through blind luck, although I’ve tried to be careful and use safer sex practices. I’m generally pretty comfortable with my level of caution versus erotic fulfillment, but this morning my anxiety has been through the roof.

I probably have some reason to be concerned. I have had some recent exposure through a couple of different vectors. The likelihood is small, but my ability to perform risk assessment is nil at the moment. When I start to worry, it’s a runaway train – my brain picks up speed until my entire being is consumed, careening out of control. I am a mess of what-ifs. The trust I have in my partners and our system means little in this state of fear. I feel paralyzed.

With any other health concern, I would approach it head on with medical care, information, and treatment. If, in fact, I do have an STD, I will deal with it this way as well as with full disclosure to current and future partners. However, in my fear befuddled state of mind, I’m having troubles calling the doctor’s office. A little bit of the hesitation is not wanting to have to explain, a bit misplaced shame about having a STD. Since no amount of internet research is going to tell me if I have anything or not, I’m going to have to deal.

Why does adding sex to anything make it terribly difficult? I totally lose it whenever I think something might be wrong with my cunt. I think that it’s related to being a survivor of sexual abuse. I don’t tolerate non-sexual pain or discomfort very well. I’ve worked hard for years to feel like I own my body and my sexuality. I don’t need some STD to go messing everything up. I think it’s also that transmission of a STD is often a breach of trust in a relationship.

I have often seen people disclose STDs in a very positive way. Until the early hours of this morning I wouldn’t have said that I believed that STDs were at all shameful, but when I suddenly applied the concept to myself, I ached with shame. I felt dirty and contaminated. I worried that no one would ever love me again. I winced at the necessity of hiding my sexuality, never dating again.

It’s not the first time I’ve had this freak-out, but I hope it’s the last. I’m trying to take the positives out of this situation. I’m feeling the seriousness of potential STD exposure. While I could cope with anything I had to, I really like my life. Sex should be about pleasure, not fear. Time to re-evaluate safer-sex practices with my partners and their partners. Time again to get tested for everything. I can handle this.

(Update)

Mar 032013
 

Fear of rejection

I’m turned on, really in the groove, and I’m fantasizing about the things I hope we’re going to do. I feel open and vulnerable. Normally we would just flow together at this point, but I’m going through an anxious patch. I know that I have him completely, any way I want, but I’m scared. He might betray my trust. I convince myself that he will turn me down. Some part of me believes that he will reject me.

Usually I am great at asking for what I want. I feel free to ask because I trust him to say yes or no as his instincts dictate. It’s totally okay for him to turn me down. I know from experience that if he doesn’t want to engage in some aspect of sex that I am proposing, he will say so gracefully and with love. We are partners. We read each other’s energy pretty well, but that doesn’t mean that we stop talking. Our lovemaking includes a steady dialogue – constantly checking in to make sure we are in sync.

It so frustrating to hit these patches of insecurity on my part. Fear of rejection strangles the flow of energy between us so I’m not able to feel his love wash through me. I stop expressing myself as well as I might, although I think I’m over communicating. My brain gets drunk on fear: I want him so much! I am so turned on! He can’t possibly want me as much as I want him. Why isn’t he connecting with me? He must not want me. He must think that I am too sexual for lusting after him so much. I’m so hurt that he’s rejecting me. I’m going to pull back, keep to myself…

If I go too far down this path, I lose my ability to give honest consent when my partner asks for what he wants. I am so afraid of rejection that I will do whatever I think will make him happy. I want his approval so much, I sacrifice my true desires, even though that’s what he actually wants to connect with. Fear makes us do some some interesting things. I’m working hard to acknowledge my fear without giving it too much power. I need him to be able to trust my yes as well as my no.

I must be sending out the biggest mixed messages right now. We’ve talked through this many times. He’s good to me. This morning he took charge of me, getting right in my face and telling me how much he loves me. Kissing me hard until I started to respond, letting my desire override my fear. He wants me.

The truth is, even when we are in solid trusting relationships with good communication, it can be terribly difficult to ask for what we want. Intimacy is about emotion.  Of course we sometimes feel afraid to reveal the desires that are closest to our hearts. What would we do if the person we love wounded us in that vulnerable place? It seems easier to not take chances.

Working through that fear has been one of the greatest things I’ve done. I’m still occasionally terrified of rejection, but I recognize when I’m afraid. Owning my stuff and practicing good communication skills is immensely helpful, but feelings are going to pop up from time to time. I still need to work through it, reminding myself that I have what I want and everything is okay. The fact that my partner will sit with me while I figure it out means that I get through the emotions faster and back to the sex!

VulnerableSo I keep asking for the wild and perverted things I want. Despite the fear of rejection, it’s empowering to be honest about my desires. I want to share myself in a real and concrete way. I want to be accepted for who I am. Talking about fear of rejection with my partner lets us use the experience to grow together. I choose to open my heart, because I would rather risk injury than never feel love at all.

Jan 052013
 

ThinkySeveral months ago Harold and I were having a passionate discourse in bed. No, we weren’t having sex. We were fighting about rape, which is weird because we’re both on the same side. Discussions about rape were everywhere as Republicans waged their war on women. I was overwhelmed by the media exposure and more than a little triggered. I wanted to discuss some of the things that were swirling around in my brain.

Of course, a conversation has at least two sides. I was coming from an emotional place and Harold was ready to try to solve our culture’s rape problem. It’s also not advisable to try to have emotionally loaded and potentially triggering conversations when one is mostly asleep, but there we were. We managed to get to a good place and go to sleep, but we’ve been discussing rape ever since. It’s frustrating to be at odds when we basically agree, but I think that struggling to articulate our thoughts is helping us to clarify our stance on rape.

Defining rape

I started our discussion with my definition of rape: to be penetrated without consent and to feel violated. It’s become obvious (to me) that we don’t have enough language to discuss rape and the aftermath easily.  It seems that when people talk about rape they are either talking about a legal definition or they are talking about how it felt to be raped. Both are valid, but it makes it terribly difficult to have a productive conversation when people are meaning different things with the same word.

I am mostly concerned with the feelings around being raped. Perhaps when we discuss the emotional aftermath, we could use the term violation, rather than rape. I don’t want to minimize rape in any way.  The physical act of rape is terrible, but bodies generally heal. The damage to the psyche is so much worse.

When people argue about whether or not a certain act is rape they tend to discount the victim’s feelings of violation. It is absolutely possible for someone to feel violated even if the experience would not meet a legal definition of rape. This is why the first reaction to any rape disclosure should be total acceptance. You don’t get a second chance. You can try to decide if the person’s experience “is really rape” at some later time. In the moment, they need you to believe them and validate their emotions.

Rape is very tricky. There are too many grey areas. In fact, rape is almost entirely grey area, as it rests in the victim’s feelings of violation and ability to consent. It often comes down to one person’s word against another. I can see why people tend to be terrified of being accused of rape, but right now I am focused on the victim’s perspective.

Feelings of violation

I want so badly to be able to describe what it feels like to be violated. I desperately want my partners to understand how I have been affected. I feel like my soul is stained. I know that I am strong, but I feel shattered inside. Something precious in me is broken.  My lovers have helped me through panic attacks and flash backs, but they cannot understand a thing they have not experienced.

Let me explain it this way… If sex is the most intimate experience you can imagine, a sharing of souls, then imagine someone being that close to you, deep inside you, against your will. That person may be someone you care about, which makes this invasion a monumental betrayal. Or that person might be repugnant to you, someone you would not choose to share yourself with. Or maybe you would have, except that your right to make a choice was stripped from you, as though you weren’t really a person at all.

Being violated leaves a mark. I see that mark reflected in people all around me. I can stand in a crowded room for a few minutes and point out to you which people have experienced sexual abuse, even though people deal with it differently. I see the stain. I think it has something to do with shame, that transference of self-hatred from the perpetrator to the victim.

Ability to consent

The ability of everyone involved in a sex act to consent is a huge part of the rape discussion. Some of it is fairly accepted in our culture, like children being unable to give consent. We slip into legal definition areas in the teen years, where each state has decided for itself how old one must be to legally give consent and how old one’s partner can be for it not to be statutory rape.

Consent becomes fuzzy when people are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Inhibitions are relaxed and someone is more likely to consent to an act in the moment that they will feel violated over the next day. It is not worth the potential harm it could cause to try and have sex with someone when they are inebriated. Furthermore, I believe that someone who takes advantage of an altered state in order to get laid is indeed a rapist.

The most difficult area of consent is where someone doesn’t say anything at all. This is not consent. The lack of a definitive “no” is not a “yes”. Let me be clear: only a “yes” is consent. There are many reasons that someone might not be able to say anything in the moment. An abuse history may have taught them that their protestations will go unheeded. Fear or a desire to be loved may keep someone from speaking out in an uncomfortable situation. Get positive affirmation from your partner before proceeding. Stop if it feels wrong.

After the fact

I hear a lot of people expressing an opinion that rape didn’t really happen if it wasn’t reported right away. If we accept that feelings of violation are a valid definition of rape, than we must accept that those feels are valid at any time. Emotions do not have expiration dates.

Rape is insidious. There are many reasons that a victim might not tell anyone right away: People often feel that what happened was their fault. If they have experienced abuse in the past, they might feel that sexual abuse is normal. They may feel that no one would believe them anyway. Sometimes victims are so unable to cope with the trauma that they put the memory away for a time. Whatever the reason, rape is still rape, even if it doesn’t get disclosed immediately.

If someone reveals to you that they have been raped, the important thing is to tell them that their feelings of violation are valid. This is not in any way debating the facts of the incident, this is purely and simply stating that they are entitled to their emotions, whatever they are. It infuriates me when people question the validity of a victim’s experience rather than supporting them.

Rape Culture

Rape is the only crime I know of where most people respond with doubt. I could tell you that my house was broken into or my car was rear-ended and the majority of people would be sympathetic and supportive, but mention rape and the response is often, Are you sure? Did you do something to bring it on?

The inability to get a compassionate response when disclosing abuse is nearly as traumatizing as the experience itself. Our culture is so busy denying that there is a rape problem, that we fail to support the people who need the most help. We need to create a safe environment for abuse reporting.

Yes, I get that a world where heinous sex crimes exists is a difficult place to live and you’d rather not acknowledge that abuse happens all around you. It seems easier to blame the victims, but by denying their stories, you are creating what you fear. When you fail recognize feelings of violation, you are in fact supporting rape culture.

 

Going back to my discussion with Harold, we have come to believe that the solution to our culture’s rape problem lies in open acceptance of people’s feelings of violation. We need to be able to say, openly and without fear of judgment, when we feel violated. We need to be heard and supported in those feelings so that everyone everywhere understands that it will not be hidden. Rapists will not be held accountable in our culture until we place emphasis on the emotional harm inherent in this crime.

Once we can have a dialog where victim’s emotions are given weight, then we can have a conversation about “what actually happened.”  A truly open forum for discussion is going to benefit everyone— not only people who feel violated, but also people who feel wrongly accused of raping.  And if our whole culture hears and understands how much rape hurts, it will be harder for anyone to pretend that it’s ever “justified” or “excusable” or “provoked”.  Until that time, though, we’re all complicit in perpetrating the secret world of sexual abuse.

Dec 272012
 

IMG_7017I’m alone in the house for the first time in days. I didn’t plan this miraculous occurrence, but I am taking advantage of it by lounging in the bathtub, musing about what it means to be part of a polyamorous household over the holidays. I was remembering this post I wrote two years ago – so much is the same and yet so different.

Our family seems to have grown larger, our connections stronger, and our love deeper. There is also the maturity that happens with two years of experience plus processing. I see it in everyone, from the children to the adults. Like any poly family, we are complicated.

I might need a diagram to explain our family. I’ve discovered that it’s useful to carry a pen and scrap paper for these occasions. At the very center of our family is me, my husband Joel, my other husband Harold, and his wife Melanie.  For the holidays this year we had our 4 year old daughter, boys of 9 and 11, two young adult daughters, an adult son and his wife (Ned and Maggie), my girlfriend Blyss, and Melanie’s boyfriend. We pulled off stockings and secret magical Santa stuff for all 13 people.

poly flow chart

Polyamory makes for a lot of people, not to mention a lot of interconnections. Blyss and Melanie’s boyfriend have been known to roll around together from time to time, and he had his girlfriend over sometimes during our celebrations. I am pondering the idea that being in a relationship with someone does not necessarily make them part of your family. But everyone wants to be close to the people they care about at the holidays. I am imagining what it will be like when our children bring home multiple partners. Joyful chaos I think. It’s a good thing that I excel at logistics.

The bulk of our family currently consists of people in their 20’s. It’s the first time in my life where I am one of the older generation. I’m finding the sensation odd. There is a generation of adults significantly younger than me. I love sharing their enthusiasm for life. I’m not sure I’m ready to take my place at the grown-up table yet.

Santa was good to me this year, as always. My stocking was filled with sexy thong panties, a new Mystic Wand (because one is not enough!), a beautiful bracelet, good hiking socks, and a chest binder. It’s Christmas for the gender confused! Harold got the new Aneros Helix Syn prostate stimulator. We tried it out on Christmas Day and I’m going to have to write a full review. (It seems pretty impressive, but we must test it further, right?) I feel so supported by our family that Harold and I had a chance to slip away for a little bit.

Harold during the holidaysWe are doing fun things all week – sledding, movies, hiking through the mountains to the hot springs, building a gingerbread tableau, feasting, baking, maybe ice skating, roasting marshmallows and telling stories, or more playing in the snow. Whatever people want to do. And nobody has to do anything that they don’t want to do. It’s amazing.

I think the holidays tend to be stressful for everyone because it brings up childhood memories and expectations. It’s exponentially more difficult the more people you toss together. We certainly don’t have things all worked out, but every year together gets better. We did a lot of communication about what is important to everyone, including the children. This year I didn’t experience the same tension I normally feel. I have a very warm intimacy flowing through me, spilling out around me. I love my family so much. Poly is good.

Dec 192012
 

IMG_6989Polyamory, sharing my life with many partners, has brought me a lot of joy. I worked hard to help create a complex and supportive family with my partners and it has paid off. Not only am I happy, but I get to see my partners’ happiness with other people. When it all works, we are sparking creativity and growth in each other all of the time. It’s beautiful. Fantastic. Amazing. I just have one gripe.

Darling, don’t kiss me when you’ve just been going down on someone else. It’s not about logic. I know, it doesn’t really make sense. Yes, I might have licked them at some point before, but that doesn’t mean that I’ve chosen to put my face in their genitals at this time. It’s different if we’re all in bed together, but if I haven’t shared in the pleasure, I don’t want to reheat the left-overs.

It’s not that I dislike genitals. Bodies are lovely and fun to explore! I enjoy bodily fluids in the right context, I just have this one little boundary. Ironically, I don’t mind kissing you after you’ve been worshipping my cunt. I like tasting myself on your lips. It’s not good if you still smell like pussy the next day though. What I’m saying is that I have a time limit, after which, I am squicked out by you kissing me while your face is covered in juices.

To be fair, it’s not just jism that makes me flinch when I see you mouth coming at me. I’m going to be a bit distracted by milk or jam or anything else clinging to your lip. I want to make out with you, not your breakfast. Or whoever you ate before breakfast.

I love you. Kissing you feels warm and wonderful, but not if I’m wondering where your face has been as you move in for a deep smootch. I know that there is not always time or opportunity to bathe between giving head and greeting me, but if you want that toe-curling, earthshaking experience, you gotta be clean. I don’t mind an intimate hug until you can wash your face. I’ll wait.

Really, Darling, don’t kiss me until you get a chance to wash up.