The Sometimes Boyfriend

29 Jan
belgianchocolate / Foter / CC BY

Ah, ladies and gents, let’s talk about the sometimes boyfriend. I don’t know if you’ve encountered the type – the one who texts when it’s convenient, or disappears for brief periods of time only to crop up again just when you have resolved you are definitely entirely over him for sure. Or the one who sees you only when he’s got nothing better to do. Well, I had a sometimes boyfriend. And then I forgot about the sometimes boyfriend. Sort of. And then, just when I think that I have entirely forgotten his existence… BAM! He texts me. Out of the blue. After two months of no word from him.

I’ve written of him before. I was quite crazy about him for a while. In fact, I was pretty head over heels in love with him. But then after a trip to Jamaica during which he texted only infrequently (in spite of the fact that he is a doctor and I texted him with a concern about my daughter having a cut that had gotten infected) I became a little less in love with him. And then, after no word from him for a month, I sent him an email with my disdain for his disappearing act, at which point he replied with “Wow, I’ve just been busy. So sorry. Nothing is wrong. I love you so much and I miss you.” *Insert sideeye here*

The Beginning: I met him on Plenty of Fish – that cesspool of endless pond scum. But sometimes in that pond full of scum you find a frog (uh, wait, what? Ignore me. Metaphors are not my strength). He was not a frog. He was the scum. I had a boyfriend at the time but I had signed up because I was bored. And because my boyfriend lived in another country and had a girlfriend there and I was keeping my options open. Anyhow, I made it clear I was looking for friendship only; my profile was open to males and females. And this guy started messaging me. I found him moderately attractive but exceptionally annoying. After we started chatting he just got so clingy. We had ended up exchanging phone numbers because communicating by PoF can be cumbersome. He texted me every. bloody. day. Always asking me for a photo. Always calling me babe. I entertained him more out of boredom than any interest in him. He was not actually in my city; he was coming there in a few months for his clinical rotation. After chatting daily for three months he finally arrived in my town. And something just clicked. In person he was no longer that annoying, clingy guy. He was sweet and affectionate and there was just this… chemistry. He stayed with me mostly for the month he was here, though he spent some nights at the residence he’d paid for before arriving. Then right before Christmas he had to return home. I flew to see him shortly after his birthday a few months later. A month after that was the Jamaica trip and the great disappearing act.

So then I went back to dating a few guys I’d been seeing before. I grew accustomed to his occasional out of the blue texts. Eventually I started seeing a guy. I wasn’t really serious about it, but he was and I kind of just fell into it. I did not even see it coming, really. Suddenly we were just living together and dating. I still didn’t really think of it seriously, though I guess some people consider living together a pretty serious step.

Anyhow, my birthday was coming up, and I still had very strong feelings for this man, the pond-scum-turned-frog (really, just tell me to cut the metaphors; they are horrifyingly bad). We had been communicating again after another of his reappearances. I was flying to Toronto for my birthday weekend. I invited him to join me. I had this need to explore whether anything was still there; I didn’t want him to be the one that got away. He expressed interest. I was looking forward to seeing him again. And then, two days before my birthday, he stopped texting. I texted plans about the weekend. No reply. I’m not a chaser, so I forgot about him.

It’s been two months. I went to Jamaica for New Years and met my current boyfriend’s (that word still freaks me out) family. They’re lovely. I adore them. I came back to Canada. Funnily, this old love had crossed my mind just a few days ago. More in the “Huh, it’s funny how he dropped off the face of the earth after claiming to love me so much” type of way. Which led me to realize that while I had loved him deeply and while I missed that love, I was no longer pining. I was no longer wondering about whether he would ever text me again. He had dropped out of my life for the last time…

And then the text. Literally hours after I had that thought. It was the usual “I was so worried about you. I texted you so much and you never replied. My texts must not have gone through” excuse. To which I rolled my eyes. He also has my email, so if his texts really weren’t going through and he was really that concerned, I’m not hard to get in touch with. No allusion to the fact that he had missed my birthday. I don’t really understand his intermittent interest. I don’t really care, now. It is funny to me, the difference in how love forms and feels, though. I loved him so intensely that I actually allowed him back once after his great disappearing act. Stupidly. And now, this boyfriend of mine, there wasn’t that same instantaneous and intense connection. It’s grown, over time. But he is the steady presence. He’s always been. And men like the sometimes boyfriend make me value his steady presence that much more. Now I have my frog. ;)

Lamentations of a Poly Girl in a Monogamous World

23 Jan
zetazone / Foter / CC BY-NC

 

If you’ve read my blog or know me personally, you’ve probably picked up on the fact that I am polyamorous. Dating as a polyamorous woman is harder than one might expect it to be. Most men think they like the idea of polyamory… but only as the poly partner. There was one time I met a guy who I was actually pretty into who was open-minded and wanted to give polyamory a try with me… but he’s now married and very monogamous (the other woman he was seeing at the time could not fathom how if you love somebody you could ever want to love somebody else, too. Sigh).

After that point my luck didn’t get much better. I had a man who is poly and married pursuing me but I wasn’t interested in being a secondary. And he wasn’t at all attractive. He was also about 15 years older than me and kind of misogynistic and obnoxious. Not at all the recipe for a happy poly relationship (or any sort of relationship for that matter).

Eventually, I kind of gave up and went on a dating free-for-all. At one point I was dating three men at once and it was absolutely delightful… except for the fact that only one of them knew that he was one of three and that is complicated and messy and not at all polyamory. I wanted for them all to know, but two of the three were not the “sharing” type (deeply steeped in patriarchal ideas about women and possession). The third wasn’t really the sharing type either but I guess he enjoyed the sex enough to overlook it. Of course, it is not sustainable to be in a relationship with three different men if you cannot be honest with them about it so eventually they all came to an end (for various reasons, though none of those reasons actually relating to the fact that I was dating other men).

I was perusing my Twitter TL the other day and stumbled across a tweet calling poly relationships “silly” and it got me a little worked up. We live in a world in which monogamy is touted as the one and only valid relationship structure. It is because of this that people frequently misunderstand many aspects of poly relationships, often thinking of it as glorified cheating. But poly relationships are not silly. They are difficult and require work and commitment and openness and honesty. Poly relationships are complex and loving and rewarding. I disdain this thing that has been so unattainable for me being dismissed so flippantly as “silly” by someone who is reinforcing monogamy-as-standard without really understanding the joys and complexities of poly relationships.

I am currently in a monogamous relationship. He knows that I am poly. Being in a monogamous relationship does not make me any less polyamorous (just like when a bisexual person enters a relationship with someone of the same sex, they’re not suddenly gay). I can do monogamy, and I will for as long as I am in a monogamous relationship because I understand the repercussions of infidelity all too well.

It’s frustrating, though, that monogamy is the only option we are provided through our socialization. We are taught that monogamy is everything. Yet infidelity is a phenomenon that is consistently an issue in marriage and long-term dating relationships. When we tout monogamy as the only relational style that is acceptable, people don’t feel comfortable expressing their desires or needs outside of a relationship, and they instead turn to lying and cheating. I would rather my partner feel comfortable telling me straight up “Hey, I met a great girl the other day and I would love to go on a date with her” than to make up some stupid lie about work or being out with the boys and carry on behind my back. Infidelity tears families apart. It crushes people emotionally. The fallout can be devastating. Polyamory provides consistent, open, and honest communication; there are no huge surprises if you fall in love with someone new. Negotiating poly relationships requires the type of communication that creates strong and lasting bonds. Yet many people continue to think of polyamory as “silly” or glorified cheating.

Other than the verbal abuse I have received from people who cannot fathom (basically because of their ignorance of what it means) the poly lifestyle, I would not change my poly inclinations for a moment. I just wish we lived in a culture more accepting of poly relationships… or of poly women, as it often seems more permissible for men to identify openly as poly than for women (often due to the double-standards of male and female sexuality where men are permitted to be sexual, to own their sexuality, and to be “promiscuous” while a woman who wants to date multiple men is just considered a “whore”). Sigh.

And these are my lamentations as a poly girl in a monogamous world.

Love Unexpected

21 Sep
geezaweezer / Foter / CC BY

 

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Love.
Love wh… What? When’d you get here? How’d this happen to me again?

I think I date a little differently than most people do. I don’t ever have the intention of settling on one human being or falling in love or having some fantasy of forever and a white dress (although I, to this day, maintain that I would look absolutely fabulous in a wedding dress and may just buy one for the hell of it). My dating has kind of evolved over the course of the past two years, for those of you who have been following for any length of time. While I used to be someone who falls hard and fast, I’ve come to find my own pace. I typically like to date a few men at a time (three or four has been a good number for me), and I keep it fairly casual. Occasionally I develop feelings, or fall into something a little more serious, but once that comes to an end, I get back to my casual ways.

I enjoy dating a few guys at once, because I like having different partners who meet my needs or desires in different ways. I love being with different people who have different ideas and philosophies and mannerisms. As someone who identifies as poly, it doesn’t strike me as illustrating a fear of commitment, per se, or a lack of interest in the people I’m with. In fact, I only maintain relationships with men I care for. The guys who are aware of my other guys sometimes get into their head that they’re “not enough” for me, which is why I have others, but it’s never about not enough.

I often use the analogy of friends to try to make it a little clearer – most of us will have several friends, maybe three or four, that we’re really close with. The people we call when we’re experiencing joy or pain or who we’ll be there for when they’re going through such things. And these people probably are all different in some ways. They provide different things to our friendship. And we love them all for different reasons. It is the same for me with men I date. It’s not that any of my friends aren’t “enough”, and not one of them has ever lamented that I have other close friends. And so it is with my men. But, living in a culture which promulgates monogamy as the one and only way to relate with a romantic partner, it becomes difficult for many people to imagine how anything outside of that can be functional and healthy and not about some sort of struggle or insecurity. And I get that. But I assure you, my propensity for dating multiple men isn’t a problem of any kind.

Anyway, when I’m dating a tend to date fairly casually. I care for my men, but I’m not expecting marriage or forever or anything of that sort. It’s fun and it’s right now, and I hope we’re reciprocally supportive of one another. I don’t need much more than that. Part of this is because I don’t know where I will be next year. Maybe I’ll still be here, maybe I’ll be halfway around the world. I could be anywhere. So I don’t want to get too involved with anyone and break their little hearts when I suddenly uproot myself and fly off on my next adventure.

But, do you ever find that sometimes, in spite of not expecting it, love kind of just happens to you? I mean, I guess it gradually develops over time, but gosh! I just never see it coming. This guy I’ve been seeing since early this summer was someone I expected to keep as a casual ‘side-guy’. And then he moved in. Still, for me, it was just casual. Of course, over time, loving feelings grow and develop. Even for those of you who love love and get into relationships with the expectations of having it, the more time you spend with someone, the more you grow to love them, right?

That moment where suddenly, you’re not really sure how or when, but love is just there. It’s weird. Because you never saw it coming. I don’t know what’s better – the love you know is going to be there, or the love that sneaks up and bites you on the nose. I think both have their positive and negatives attributes. And, of course, it’s different with every human you fall in love with.

For now, I’m not going to question too much. I’m just going to ride this out and see where it goes. Because, if you don’t know anything else about me, I’m sure you’ve all discovered by now that I am transient: in love today, dying to be single and alone tomorrow.

Plenty of Fish in the Sea…

18 Sep

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I have always kind of hated the saying “There’s plenty of fish in the sea”, for a number of reasons. Firstly, I don’t want to date a fish. And obviously I know it’s a metaphor, but also, I kind of hate most cliche metaphors. A good, poetic, metaphor is something I swoon over. But those are rare and relegated to the dusty pages of old books, it seems. Colloquial metaphors kill me.

So anyway, I don’t want to date a fish and stuff. But I also hate that phrase because while, yeah, there are tons and tons and tons of dudes out there, the number of those dudes that I find attractive, or even tolerable, is miniscule. And then, once narrowed down to people I can actually stand to be in the same vicinity as for any amount of time, the matter of “chemistry” (to use another irritating colloquial metaphor) becomes another failing of paramount proportions. Because once I find someone attractive enough to consider dating, and then I meet them and sit down with them, I quickly realize that there is nothing there in terms of romantic connection. So, with all of those “fish” at my disposal, the number who are actually compatible with me are next to nil.

Although, on the other hand, part of the reason I identify as poly is because there are so many sexy, intelligent men out there, who just happen to all live very far from me, but who I would bone in a heartbeat (is bone an applicable colloquialism for a lady? Or nah?) that I can’t just limit myself to one. I’m a walking contradiction, I’m aware.

But, back to the fish. The guy I’ve been seeing made me angry the other night. It was ridiculously foolish – he wanted me to come to bed, and instead of saying something super nice like “Hey girl, you’re so beautiful and I haven’t seen you all day and I’d really like to just place my hands on your body and fall asleep together” he texted me “Come up”. And I don’t know if you all know this about me, but I don’t take direction well. So, I said “Come down”. Because why you telling me what to do, knowing that I hate that? Anyway, it was silly, and I’ve since forgiven him, but I was mad and also bored, and kinda missing my super funny stories from my POF days, so, I signed back up for the dreadful dating website. More because I was curious about the dating scene since it’s been a year since I’ve dabbled in online dating than because I was mad, but also a little because I was mad.

Within minutes, I remembered exactly why I unhesitatingly deleted my profile in the first place. Sadly, once activated you must wait 24 hours to delete a POF account. (My time is up. It is once again gone.)

And you know, I now seriously question the very veracity of that obnoxious metaphorical statement about the plethora of fish at our disposal. Because you know what? I recognized every damn face on that site. There might have been a few new faces, but the majority of the people I saw in my matches, sending me messages, and browsing were guys who’ve been on there since my very first foray into online dating two years ago. It’s a little depressing, really. There are better options on Twitter. (Seriously, some of my followers are beautiful and brilliant… and I would totally date them if they didn’t live five billion miles away). But there are guys on POF with nicknames like xxxBigDxxx and photos that state they’re only single because their dick is too big (which convinces me only that men are obsessed with dicks FAR more than women could ever be).

If nothing else, my brief re-experimentation with POF has shown me that, while I am not fond of dating one human being or being tied down, sometimes you gotta just be happy with what you’ve got, because what’s out there for options is pretty abysmal. It kind of makes me appreciate him a little more, knowing that I’ve got a human being in my life that I can (mostly) tolerate, and who cares about me. Baby steps, for me, the commitmentphobe.

The Good, The Bad, and the Just Plain Ugly

16 Sep

Are you all on Twitter? If not, you should be. A couple nights ago I was perusing my TL (I think that means Timeline, but I’m not really sure because I’m not great at Twitter lingo… I try, but don’t follow my lead because I’ll probably lead you astray), when it came abuzz with talk of A Penis. There was apparently, located somewhere in the ether, a video of a very shiny, well-moisturized, lengthy, helicoptering penis. Some were hailing the penis as the Holy Grail, while others were bemoaning it’s tremendous length and imagining the internal damage such a schlong might do. And with all of this talk, I just knew, I had to see this penis!

So, after some stealth searching (not really… I knew someone referencing this penis to end all penises would have a link to the video somewhere), lo and behold – there it was. And lord, was it a penis. It was a beauty of a dick. And really, it was very shiny indeed. A vine of a beautifully endowed man helicoptering his exceptionally long meat has not left my consciousness since I viewed it. Have you ever seen a dick and just thought “Wow, I could look at this all day?”… or do other things to/with/on/near it? Yeah, I am glad to have witnessed this most excellent of specimens.

But, you know, not all dicks are that attractive. I’ve been the recipient of a lot of dick pics. Many (like 99.8%) of those, unsolicited and undesired. And dicks come in all shapes and sizes and aesthetics. It’s very subjective, really, how attractive a dick is. But I’ve seen a plethora, and I have to say, they’re not all appealing. Out of the dick buffet I’ve been privy to, I’d have to say there are a number that I’d simply not like to sample.

Like the guy who sent me a photo of his very short, kind of mushroom-like, very white (it kind of reminded me of the colour of an earthworm… just… ew) dick next to a hairspray can, in an attempt to illustrate its girth. I still have nightmares about that one. Or the guy whose tip looked like it had gone through a meat grinder. Or the one that just looked like it definitely had an less-than-savoury odour. I can’t say how something could look like it would smell so bad outside of cartoons with those wavy lines that clearly indicate stench… but it just looked stinky.

I like to think of myself as nonjudgmental. And really, I practice that most of the time. But I’m a little less forgiving when on the receiving end of images of unattractive dicks that I never asked to see in the first place. And I just think it’s important to talk about the fact that some dicks are just scary.

Maybe this is a lesson for all of you penis-havers out there: If you’re going to send a picture of your penis to someone, make sure they want to see it, first. They’ll likely be more receptive to it, even if it looks a little smelly. And to shiny, helicoptering dick dude – call me!

Dudebro, Your Ego is Showing

10 Sep
Chiot’s Run / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

(Never fear; Super Ego is here).

Guise! I’m sorry. It’s been so long, I know. But things have been crazy, for me. I quit my job way back in May. I had had enough, after seven years. It was a horrible, soul-sucking helluva a job. But I needed it. It got me through seven years of university. I knew, though, that if I didn’t quit, I’d just keep doing it forever and ever, and would remain miserable. So, one day, I just quit. And that gave me time to focus on my thesis (do not even broach the subject of how that’s coming. See the below image for further instructions on how to discuss my thesis with me).

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So anyway, I did some work on my thesis, and we’ll leave it at that. I also got a new job (IT IS MY DREAM JOB AND I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT IT!). And I spent my summer quite ill. So ill that most days I wasn’t able to get out of bed. I even vomited on the bus. In front of dozens of people who then regarded me as a leper or something the rest of the bus ride. It has been a whirlwind few months for me. Hence my silence.

But, here I am. I’m back. At 3am, no less.

So let me tell you about something that transpired about a month ago. I don’t know if y’all will remember, but there was a guy I was seeing. He was tall, and dark, and very handsome. He was charming. He kinda left me brokenhearted on my birthday that one time. But then we worked things out, and I thought he was cool with my being poly, and we had some delightful months thereafter where I could be with him and talk about other guys I was seeing, and it was just pretty awesome. But there was always this little voice nagging in the background… screaming about the little red flags he was raising all over the place.

Like his initial possessiveness. I don’t do possessive, jealous-type relationships. As someone who likes to date more than one person, that doesn’t really work so well. But after the big birthday blowup, that seemed to have subsided. He laid it aside because he was so enamored that he just wanted to be able to be with me. And it was nice. Though, I suppose, his jealousy lingered beneath the surface that whole time.

Then there was how he spoke of his relationships with other women. It always bothered me. I listen carefully to how men talk about women in their lives. It’s a huge indication of how he will treat you, and how he will relate to you. And it seemed to me that this man had trouble relating to women. But when he flashed that beautiful, toothy grin of his, I kinda overlooked some of the things I shouldn’t have.

The final straw, though, was his manipulativeness. He stopped being openly possessive, but his jealousy became a little more insidious. When he didn’t get what he wanted (i.e., time with me) he would get petty. He would throw little petulant, man-child tantrums. He would never quite call me a slut, but he would imply it. And he would provoke me over every idea I hold dear to me. I put up with it for a time because the sex was a-ma-zing! and because he was so charming and sweet the rest of the time. But then there came a day where I decided it was time to cut him loose. I have no time for that kind of negativity in my life. And as beautiful as he was, that kind of demeanor (the petty passive-aggressiveness) is just plain ugly.

So I didn’t hear from him for a time. I had someone move in. When he next texted, I told him there was a man living with me. I didn’t hear from him for some time, again. And then, out of the blue, as he always would, he texted and said he wanted to see me. He was going out of town that day, and before his flight he wanted to visit. I said sure, but that the guy who’s been living with me was here (because I knew that by visit what he really meant was get naked and make passionate love). He arrived, and I went outside to meet him. He wanted to come in. I said I didn’t think it a good idea. He knows a neighbour of mine, and so went over for a drink, texting me all the while. Repeatedly asking to come over. And, because I refused him (I had, after all, ended things months prior with him because of his propensity to be negative and demeaning), he became upset. I think he thought I’d remember the incredible sex we had and forget everything else.

As he was waiting for his bus to go pick up his bags, he texted me.

I think we should end things. I don’t think this is healthy for us anymore.

Blink Um, yeah. I kinda did that about three months ago when I said “I think this is the end of the road, for us… but if you say so now… it must be so.” (Sardonicism)

And as I was typing out a final goodbye, he abruptly deleted me as a contact, so he never did get to see my parting words to him. Which is fine, because he probably would have misinterpreted them as some sort of pleading with him to stay or something, as he seemed so deluded about his role in the ending of our relationship.

And that was a total Dudebro ego moment. He was no longer getting the P so he ended things… even though they’d ended months before. Whatever you gotta do to save face, I guess.

Slutocracy

1 Jun
Thomas Hawk / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Before I say anything else, let me assert one very important thing – There is no such thing as a slut. A slut does not exist. Whether a woman has fucked one man or one thousand men, there is no such thing as a slut.

But how could that be, you might be wondering. I’ve called someone a slut. I’ve been called a slut. So, doesn’t that mean that sluts exist?

No. The word slut is a tool of oppression. Ask anyone who levies the term frequently to define it. They might say something like “a slut is a woman who sleeps with a lot of guys” or “a slut has a lot of random sex”. But go on to ask them to define a lot, to define what’s too much random sex, or to contrast how a woman behaving in sexually autonomous ways is any worse than a man behaving in sexually autonomous ways, and they will most likely be at a loss for an answer. They might talk in circles, but they cannot offer any definitive definition of a slut.

And that is because a slut does not exist. It doesn’t matter your body count. It doesn’t matter how you dress. It doesn’t matter how you behave. The word slut is meant to keep women in their place, and that’s it’s only function. Women are called a slut when they’re behaving dangerously autonomously. That doesn’t bode well for a system that functions on women as sex objects. See, a woman who is sexually autonomous kinda throws the whole patriarchal system off in that women are owning themselves in ways that the patriarchy has always discouraged.

If I had a dollar for every time I have been called a slut – both as a derogatory term and by those who have attempted to reclaim it as a positive affirmation of female sexuality – I’d probably have enough to buy a sexy (slutty?) new dress. An expensive one. I remember the first time I was called a slut. I was 15. It hit me like a slap in the face. I was a virgin. I had never kissed a guy. How could I be a slut? And it was then that I learned that a slut does not exist. It’s a word that is used to control female behaviour, particularly her sexual behaviour. There is no word in the English language that is likewise used to moderate male sexuality. Men are expected to be sexual. But when a woman is in charge of her sexuality, when she is sexually autonomous and takes command of her sex life unapologetically, somehow that feels threatening for men and sometimes other women. Then she becomes a slut.

So I will iterate – there is no such thing as a slut. It doesn’t matter how many men you have slept with. It does not matter how casually you engage in sexual relations. It does not matter how you dress or how you look. There is no such thing as a slut.

I say this because too often when a man becomes upset or angry with me, his go-to is to either call me fat or a slut. As if being fat or slutty are the worst things a woman can be. Well here’s a public service announcement to all you men out there: if it weren’t for women who were willing to have sex with you, you wouldn’t be having sex. So what the fuck are you complaining about? Instead of denigrating a woman for actually desiring to fuck you, why would you not be empowering women to feel good about their autonomy and their personal choices?

One such man tried to make the argument that I was being devalued by men I am sleeping with, even though I consciously make the choice of who I want in my bed and who I don’t. I’m not sure how that is a devaluing experience, but I think it had more to do with patriarchal notions of how men and women engage in sex. There’s this idea that men are always sexual. That men use women for sex. That men are not emotional or desirous of a relationship. But I’m a smart woman. I don’t fuck men who don’t know my value. I don’t fuck men who disrespect women. And I certainly don’t fuck men who call women sluts. And even if I did, I still wouldn’t be a slut.

So go on and get out of here with your oppressive language and treat women as the sexual, autonomous beings deserving of respect that they are.

I’m Not Here For You

31 May
fabiogis50 / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

When will men learn that I, and all women, do not exist for them? When will they learn that my autonomy is about doing what feels right for me and has nothing to do with eliciting the male gaze? I love to take selfies. I’m an avid selfie-taker. I went years being the taker of photographs for everyone else and rarely being in them myself. I was documenting my daughter’s life through photographs, yet I was almost never in those photos myself. Which is pretty weird, given that I would have to say that I am a pretty huge part of my daughter’s life… having brought her into the world and raised her for ten years.

After splitting with my ex I began taking more photographs of myself, because I was feeling good about myself again. When I was with him, he constantly tore me down through years of mental and emotional abuse. He was constantly ‘worried’ about my weight, which was strange since it was never a concern of mine. There was no noticeable decline in how I felt about myself, and I don’t think he ever really diminished my self-esteem, but I wasn’t interested in appearing in photos. That changed when he exited my life.

Now I take selfies when I feel like I look good, when I’m crying, when I’m feeling sexy, when I’m feeling bloated, when I’m eating, when I’m walking. Basically, I take a selfie whenever I damn well feel like. I’ve gotten some flak for this, but the fortunate thing is that I don’t give a fuck about haters and their opinions on the volume of my selfie-taking, because I’m not doing it for them. I’m doing it for me.

It seems, however, that in addition to some people who just want to bemoan my volume of shared selfies, there are those who don’t understand that a selfie is a pretty selfish thing. There are those who think that every damn selfie I post is some sort of invitation to a man to comment, like I give a fuck about his opinion. Men have a hard time coming to terms with the fact that women can exist, and be attractive, in spaces that males also exist in and not be existing for them. See, sometimes I post a selfie in which I look sexy because I like it. I’m not saying “Hey, all the dudes of the internet who can see this. Please validate how attractive I am and provide your unsolicited commentary on my body and how I look and whether or not I’m dateable or fuckable”. Let me just be perfectly clear here – when I am posting photographs, I am doing so selfishly. It is all about me. I don’t give a fuck if you think I’m attractive or unattractive. I don’t give a fuck if you think I should shave my armpit hair or that I should show less cleavage. I do not give one single fuck about any opinion you have, unless I have asked you for your opinion. And since I haven’t, shut the fuck up and go play somewhere else.

Why my volatility, you may ask? Because I’m sitting here getting some work done, minding my own business when one of The Menz felt it necessary to insert his unsolicited (and entirely undesired) opinion on me.

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It cut off the rest of my response which reads “Not everything a woman does is about men”. I know that’s hard to believe, but seriously, we don’t exist for you.

And, of course, as a “really hot chick” my one and only goal in life must be to find a really hot guy. Not the, you know, seven years of university education I have completed. Or the activism that I engage in. No, my sole purpose in life is obviously to attract the menz, and since I’m being attractive in spaces where men can see me, that means I’m also obviously desperate. *Eye roll*

Oh, and my cleavage is weird, guys.

But wait. There’s more.

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He’s open-minded guys. That’s why he’s offended by my weird cleavage. And he doesn’t like to see a girl (FYI – I’m a grown ass woman, dude) showing herself. Because my showing my body is obviously all about everybody else’s comfort with that. Because I obviously care how this guy that I don’t know feels about my weird cleavage. But then, of course, I guess he thinks I also need his validation because he has to tell me that I’m “straight-up sexy”. Um, so? My weird cleavage and I don’t really care whether you think we’re sexy or unsexy or anything else. Get the fuck out here with your dumbass, unsolicited attention.

People wonder why men get a bad reputation, or why there are generalizations about men, as a group, and the ways in which they treat women. It’s this sense of entitlement, this idea that women are existing in public spheres for the men to judge, desire, and comment upon. It’s okay to keep your opinion to yourself. It’s okay to be uncomfortable with my comfort and autonomy. But if you don’t like it, you can remove yourself from my space because I’m going to keep existing unapologetically for me.

Giving Love a Chance… Again

29 May
JD’na / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

 

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time” – Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou’s passing yesterday had social media abuzz with remembering her, quoting her, and celebrating a brilliant life well lived. This quote in particular is one that stands out to me, right now. I can’t choose a favourite; I think all of her words were inspiring. It’s just that with the current state of my life, this happens to be the one that is most salient to me.

I am so ambivalent about love. And I’m so transient in it. I fall in love at the drop of a hat; about as quickly as I fall out of love. Because I’m always willing to trust in love just once more, yet I am wary and hesitant and have developed the ability to shut it off when I need to. Like when I dated the Doctor. I loved him, truly. And I actually trusted that things were going to work out. I had no reason to believe otherwise. And then they didn’t (well, he claims they’re still working but when you can’t text a person you’re in a relationship more than once a month, then you can just as soon call it quits). I was upset for a day or two, and then I moved on. There were no tears. Just a mild disappointment.

I think my nonchalance partly comes from being secure in myself. I am perfectly happy to be single and alone. It’s not something I regard as negative. Some people spend all of their time trying to be in relationships, but for me they just happen. It’s never something I’m actively looking for. Because I don’t need someone to complete me. I’m complete on my own.

The thing about this particular quote of Miss Angelou’s is that I currently do love someone. He doesn’t know it, though. I’m sure I should tell him, but I can’t bring myself to do it. I told myself that I would tell him the next time I saw him… but then he came over and I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I can’t text it to him (though that would be a forum through which i might be bold enough to vocalize my feelings) because it’s too impersonal for something so important. If I didn’t suspect that he may have another girlfriend, I probably would have said it already. But that complicates things. Because what’s worse than a love unrequited?

Possibly one that’s requited but remains unsaid?

Whatever happens, I will continue to trust love. Just one more time. Every time.

Induratized

27 May

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Induratize. I’m not sure if this is actually a word or just one of those things that surfaces on the internet and everyone just adopts it because it seems legit. But when I saw this post by Word Porn on Facebook it spoke to me and I, like millions of other easily persuaded Facebook followers, I’m sure, adapted it into my lexicon because it just fits. I think I could describe myself as induratized.

I’m not good at love. I’m kinda abysmal at it, particularly for someone who has a blog devoted to dating (though, in my defense, it really began as a way to talk about all the weirdos out there in the dating sphere and the bizarre things I encountered because dating is seriously ridiculous like 97% of the time <— real scientific data; I swear).

And since the inception of this blog of mine, those who’ve been following, reading my (increasingly infrequent) posts, you’ve seen that my dating life is a rollercoaster. Sometimes it’s funny. Sometimes it’s heartwarming. Sometimes it’s heartbreaking. But if there’s one consistent thing about my dating life, it’s its inconsistency.

I seem to have come to an arrangement that works for me. I have guys that I see, but I keep my distance. I am focusing on finishing this damned degree, on applications to doctoral programs, on what I am going to do for the next year or so. And I let a man fill in the time every now and again.

The trouble is, I always catch the feels. I am an independent woman. I don’t needa man. I enjoy their company. It’s nice to have that comfort every now and again. But I’m certainly happy enough on my own. If I really need to cuddle, I’ve got my big furry beast. Having a boyfriend is not high on my list of priorities. And I’m really pretty good at keeping a relationship purely physical. The thing is, I can’t stop catching the feels. I’m gonna blame John Legend for this one. And I’m going to immediately discontinue listening to his album. On repeat. (Which is a lie. I’m listening to it right now).

There’s this guy. I’ve written of him before on my blog. Never really explicitly. I’ve dropped hints of him, here and there. Because while I’ve been seeing him for a year now, he’s been someone I’ve kept at a distance. I didn’t realize I had developed feelings for him until the first time I walked into a club and found him wining with a girl. I had this instant but very brief irrational surge of jealousy.

And because of Induratization (I don’t even know if induratize is a word; I may be making up a whole shit ton of words, tonight), I withdrew. I distanced myself from him. I contacted him less. He once said he loved me. I changed the subject. If that’s not a heart hardened to love, I don’t know what is. And it worked. For a time. Until very recently. And now I cannot get him out of my head. I suspect he may have a girlfriend. And every time I think of that, it brings me back to that day when he told me he loved me and I… completely ignored his declaration and moved on to some mundane topic or another. So if I miss out on love again, I’ve got only myself to blame.

holia / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

 

It works in my favour, though, that I am incorrigibly transient in my emotions. I love you, today. But I might not tomorrow.

Sometimes I think I should tell him, but then my hardened heart is not so good at articulating those feels. So, I’ll just carry on letting love pass me by, and sinking back into blissful oblivion.

Maybe someday I will have a love life that isn’t so messy and constantly chaotic.

Or I’ll just take this job in Thailand and marry the sunshine and beaches, my real true love.

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