Purveyor of Pleasure

Pleasure is my business, my life, my joy, my purpose.

Tag: my search for ground

Civil War

I feel as though I have warring factions within me, aching for battle and unsure of what to do, trying to figure out who comes out on top, but there is no “on top” to come out onto, not that I would have it if there were. In a world of innumerable options I can see them all and wish to partake in all of them, and not just one by one.

It is an ever-constant ever-changing process to become the me I wish to be, and so often I have no idea how to do it. I look at the past to help inform my present, to see what worked and what not to do, but I can only do so much without the freedom to explore beyond the limited space I am in now. I am made up of not just one but many dichotomies that are constantly at war and trying to figure out how to live together harmoniously.

As much as I don’t believe in binary systems for most things because these ideas are so solid in their construction it does often feel like I am being pulled in two directions. I must be one or the other at any given time as both cannot exist in the same moment or in the same space. It’s okay to have different aspects in yourself but for them to be existing at the same time seems to be something that is not believable.

I’m tired of rigid lines separating me from myself. I feel constantly torn, constantly at war with the sides I am told are opposites. They do not feel like opposites. I never am not one while presenting as the other, so how do I adequately express myself?

So I am exploring and learning, growing, changing, as much as possible but it never feels enough. I don’t know how to become who I will be, I only know how to be the me I am right now. The trick is to be okay with that and only that in the moment while striving for better.

Reflections and Refractions

Of all the pain and disaster of everything that has happened there have at least been some good things.

I have learned a lot, both about myself and about what I desire in another person. When forced to make a choice between Marla and Onyx I chose neither, and through that choice learned who was truly supportive of me.

I needed time if I was going to be with either of them again, and Marla would not give that to me. The little time that we were still in contact after I broke us up or paused us or whatever she basically constantly brought up her and I being together and how she could not understand how I had not chosen her automatically. She didn’t seem to understand the bond between Onyx and I, and maybe that was my fault for being so unsteady in my relationship with him and confiding in her my questions and unsureness. It seemed that we could not have a conversation without her saying something passive-aggressive or bringing up our possible future.

However, I am not saying she is wholly to blame. I am definitely not without blame. We both needed support at the time, but we needed the opposite of what the other needed. She needed me even more after the triad disbanded, and I needed time to figure things out. I needed her to be happy without me, and she needed me to need her.

Finally things between us got to the breaking point and I knew we could no longer be in contact. I was content still being loosely in contact through social networks and such, just not direct contact, until her mother posted on my Facebook page essentially telling me to remove anyone she was related to and not be in contact with them again. I followed her instructions and took that beyond Facebook to every social media network Marla and I had contact on. It wasn’t easy, but it was necessary for us both, I think.

This was before Onyx visited. During and ever since he and I have been in more and more contact. I have been hesitant to say we are in a relationship again, but he has proven time and time again that he is supportive of me and my needs. He had questions after everything that happened too, but was willing to give me the time I needed without pressing the issue or getting in arguments with me.

It has been two months as of today since the triad broke, and twenty one days since I broke all contact with Marla. While I mourn the loss of what we were trying to do and of Marla as a friend and lover I also think everything has turned out for the best. From what I hear she is doing well and is happy, and I am extremely glad for that, she deserves all the happiness in the world.

As for Onyx and myself, it has come to the point where I cannot deny that we are in a relationship again. It feels very much like a new relationship, however, a new and improved version of us, a fresh start in some ways. The experiences of the past year as well as being apart have combined to rekindle the passion between us, and it is simply amazing.

The positive side of me focusing on my own failures is that it has become easier for me to heal long-held emotional wounds. I have a tendency to hang on to them for as long as possible, and some I was holding on to were a huge hindrance in my relationship with Onyx. I can’t say I have abandoned them one hundred percent, but I have as much as possible and I’m working on releasing the rest.

Essentially we have a second chance for us, something we have been talking about needing for quite some time.

I’m actually quite amazed at the desire we have recovered, and I think having gone through everything we have in the five years that we have been together all will contribute to us being smarter about things in the many more years to come. We hope to avoid the pitfalls we fell into the last time around.

We both have grown a lot since and because of everything that has happened and have talked a lot about what we will and will not do next time we find someone we are interested in either separately or as a couple. We are both, in many ways, different people than we were before and ready to try things again which failed in the past, including rediscovering our D/s roles together.

I’m still staying up in Juneau, and he’s still in Seattle, so we will have time apart for a while to figure out our respective lives before being able to be with each other in the same way we once were, and I think the time apart will help us both immensely.

If I Was Really Honest with Myself…

…what would I say?

This question has been running through my head over and over since everything happened in November. I’m still processing everything, but life must go on in the meantime as much as I want to pause it and analyze and figure things out before continuing I, unfortunately, do not have the ability to do that, so I’m taking everything one step at a time.

Ang just wrote a post on Things People Say about polyamory and what it entails, when she posed this question on twitter “Finish this sentence: “For poly to work, everyone involved must…………..”” I immediately responded “…communicate and be honest, especially with themselves.” These aren’t the only things that are required, but they are what immediately came to mind, specifically because they were our downfalls.

I think honesty was one of the big things missing from the triad. Ultimately, dishonesty is what ended up splitting us so suddenly, but it had been a problem for quite a while, and for all of us to an extent I think. I know there were times when I was dishonest, specifically to myself but through being dishonest with myself I was dishonest with the others. It is so easy for me to deceive myself, though I used to be much better at it than I am now as I’ve purposefully worked at eroding that skill set.

No one is able to be honest with themselves 100 percent of the time because that’s just not the way our brains work. What we think we want in one minute could be wrong, a distraction, or simply part of the process of moving us toward the ultimate realization. Or maybe it is what we want in that moment, we just don’t want it later. Our brains work in convoluted ways and often will not let us know the whole truth that is going on inside us until it is too late.

It’s often difficult to tell the difference between dishonesty and change in some cases as well. There were many times within the triad relationship when I was wondering about things, worried about things, or thinking about things in a way that was contrary to how I ended up feeling. Were those times when I was being dishonest or simply something that changed in me during the course of the trilationship? Probably a little of both.

I will be honest and say that there have been many times lately and in the past when I have wondered if I am still attracted to males. Aside from Onyx there hasn’t been another I have really been attracted to in a long time. Being with a female again reminded me of just how attracted I am to females. On the one hand I don’t want to limit myself, but on the other I find my understanding of my desires evolving as I do.

There was a period of a few weeks after the triad dissolved that I was feeling decidedly asexual, no doubt as part of a coping mechanism to the shock of everything that happened and the need for me to get space and take time. I used that time to evaluate a lot of things about myself and my desires, and realized while my desires have remained fairly constant my ability to articulate them has definitely changed.

For a long time I have called myself intellisexual but maybe not fully embraced the meaning. I’m attracted to intelligence and intellect, to individuals and all the things that make up an individual rather than the body that individual inhabits. For as long as I can remember I’ve had a bit of an indifference to genitals, by which I mean I don’t find genitals in and of themselves sexy or arousing. I can’t look at a picture of a cock or cunt and be that attracted to it without knowing the person behind it. This rang home for me when Onyx visited.

Before the triad split it had been a while since Onyx and I had sex, and the times we did after Marla moved in with us were not only few and far between but also often strange and unpleasant for one reason or another. There were a lot of negative emotions going on and a lot of things coming between our relationship with one another, so our sex as well as our relationship suffered from it dramatically. This was a major factor in my wondering about being attracted to males, I believe, since we weren’t fitting together and he is one of the only males I have any sort of attraction to the conclusion for my brain was to think maybe I should just give up males altogether.

When we were talking about him visiting I was nervous because of this, I didn’t know if I was going to be attracted to him again, I didn’t know if it was going to be a farewell visit or a reconciliation. After the split and before he visited there were instances when I was masturbating and he came to mind without my conscious invoking of him, which made me more secure in his coming up here. I figured one way or another something would be determined by his visit.

I still look at images of cocks and cunts and have very little attraction, but when he was here I was definitely attracted to him. There was a spark between us that I hadn’t felt in many years, since way before we moved to Seattle. We had amazing chemistry once upon a time, but the pressure we put on ourselves, getting used to each other, and getting to the point of taking each other for granted definitely changed our interactions for the worse. That chemistry was back full-force as the weight of the triad had been lifted from both of us and we both have been focusing on ourselves since everything happened. It was amazing once again.

For the moment I’m still sticking with the needing to be alone idea. We are pausing our relationship in a way right now in that we are separated by many miles, but still keeping in touch and planning on visiting each other regularly. For some people this would be a long-distance relationship, but that’s not what I’m comfortable terming it at the moment. I am taking time to figure out my life as well as analyze and discover aspects of myself long since forgotten, and I believe he is doing the same. We’re both working on rethinking the way we both approach our relationship so that we do not fall into the same traps and end up getting into a rut the way we have before.

We got too stuck in the idea of a relationship as the focal point of life rather than a support system or another person to create home together. We both need focuses outside the relationship more than we were getting before, and that is what we’re getting now being so far apart and not living together. He has been my home for so long, but we were going about it the wrong way. Instead of going off and having our own adventures so that we could come back together, share what we experienced and learned, and be stronger for it we got way too wrapped up in each other over the course of our relationship, especially moving to a new place together where I had trouble finding a job or an outside focus.

There was a long while when we talked a lot about needing to get out of our isolationist funk but we were having trouble doing it, which is when Marla came along and seemed to fill that need so perfectly. She seemed to fit in with us so well and came right at the perfect time, and although everything crumbled in the end the experience was extraordinarily valuable. Among many other things it showed me just how strong my bond with Onyx is, that I haven’t been willing to give him up despite the opportunity, which, quite honestly, surprised me.

There are still a lot of things to figure out, and for that I’m glad we have lots of time and space to work on everything. I’m glad to keep as many options open as possible, and do wish that things had happened differently, but I think everything has worked out for the best.

Rediscoveries

Now that I am somewhat outside of the relationships that have consumed me and took over my life for the last eight or so months I find myself getting more in touch with my needs. I am glad to have so much alone time and time to focus on me as me rather than me in a relationship. I’m thinking about this blog again much more than I have for the last few months, though I still have more drafts than posts.

I have so many different aspects of myself that I’m trying to appease all at once and am realizing there is no real way for me to do that. They are easily expressed by what appear to be binaries, but only because of the limitations of language and binaries being so ingrained in our way of thinking/expressing. There are multiple facets within each of the “binary” (appearing) identities, such as Top and bottom each having different aspects of power roles as well as sadomasochistic roles and kinks and fetishes of their own, and there is a multi-identity as well, such as switch. The same is true for my gender identities, though they can be broken down into femme and fagette there are multiple aspects within each and a multi-identity being genderfluid or multigendered.

I’m getting back in touch with the kink side of me, which is sad that somehow it got lost in the relationships I was having, but also understandable. The ability to have sexual intimacy was strained basically since July when Marla moved in with us, and before that it was strained as well for different reasons. This impacted a lot of things, but the little sex and sexual intimacy we were able to have was almost always short and usually fairly vanilla.

Specifically I miss bottoming. I haven’t done a lot of it in the last few months at all, though I have done some Topping. I actually miss more than bottoming, I miss submitting, and these days I often find myself desiring intense power play situations. I miss analyzing things on here as well, and having things to analyze beyond the triad. I realize I used to write a lot about power play, especially being a feminist submissive and all that can come along with that, back when my site was Fem(me)inist Fucktoy. I just miss power play in general, so much that I’ve actually gone on IRC and done some anonymously, though it’s no substitute for the real thing.

Onyx came up here for New Year’s and leaves tomorrow, which was good timing considering the desire for bottoming I’ve had. We’ve had a wonderful week so far and it has helped me remember how well we work together, how we used to work years ago before a lot of other things started getting in the way. I still don’t know what that means for us as partners, however. He’s been my lover, my friend, and my family for over four years and I hate that he spent both his birthday and the recent holidays alone, which was a big factor in my wanting him to come up here, but not the only factor. However, I still feel broken and damaged. I wonder when I will be able to trust anyone again, myself included. I still maintain that I need to be alone for a while, and he knows this and is willing to give me the time I need while still being able to be in touch and see each other.

Juneau is a good place for me to be for a while, to heal my wounds, to figure things out, to rediscover parts of myself I lost or forgot about. I’m not yet sure how to reconcile everything I feel inside, and often wonder if it is legitimate. I am still trying to figure out the underlying desires and drives which cause me to act how I do, but it’s a life-long task which may never be finished. In many ways I feel like I don’t know what I’m doing, but I’m taking it one day at a time.

Familiar Footsteps

For a long time I was very similar to my sister, I followed in her footprints if you will. This wasn’t an intentional decision on my part to become more like her it just kind of happened that way. We have similar interests, and have for as long as I can remember. We have both been blogging for a long time and our current blog incarnations and online personae developed independently of each other but are also somewhat similar.

I have never consciously emulated her, but I think I do to a degree. Onyx has said he thinks this is because I see her as someone who has her life together, who has taken control, and that’s what I want to do. Maybe that’s true, or maybe I just want to emulate her in the way a younger sister looks up to her elder, or maybe it is something else entirely. I’m really not sure.

Now it seems like every major decision I make is one she has made in one way or another, and maybe these are things everyone has to go through, but it seems more specific than that. Even leaving my relationships and coming to Juneau for a while is something she did, though I didn’t know that until I was doing it and she mentioned she did the same thing.

To a point I don’t want to emulate her, I don’t want to find my life patterning similarly to how hers did ten years ago. While I don’t consciously make choices based on what she did I find myself over and over making similar choices. Is this simply because we are so similar, a fact which becomes more and more apparent to me, or is there something else at work here?

In the last few months to a year I have been thinking heavily about what it is I am wanting to do with my life, and the more I wonder the less I have any idea. I have all these ideas and interests and desires but haven’t had any direction or ability to figure out my path from point A (where I am) to point Z (where I want to be). The recent shaking up of my life and comfort has really made me think about everything anew, and I feel more on track now than I have before, which is really amazing.

For the longest time I could focus on school, it was all I knew, really, and my side focus was finding love because that was something I hadn’t really experienced. I found Onyx, I finished school, I found Marla, now those relationships are gone or changing and I’m back in my hometown, which is weird in and of itself. I love having time to think about me, and I’m glad I’m taking the time away from relationships to figure things out about past and future relationships to be sure not to make the same mistake.

Since I’ve been here the clouds of distraction are clearing and things are finally moving forward. I spoke with a piercer I’ve been coming to for around eight years about becoming her apprentice and she agreed! I’m overjoyed, though the apprenticeship will not begin immediately it will happen. This is an important step toward the rest of my life, I think. I have tentative future plans after the apprenticeship is over, though it will probably be a year or more. I am getting a grip on life and enjoying it.

I will be up in Juneau, Alaska for a while, though hopefully I’ll be able to go down south every once in a while as well, but I will be writing from Alaska until you hear otherwise. Staying in Juneau is not something my sister chose, and I’m wondering if this time focusing on myself outside of a relationship and the reawakening I am experiencing will jolt me out of the familiar patterns I was falling into.

Rights and Responsibilities

I had never broken up with someone before, but now I’ve essentially had to do it twice in the span of a week or so. I feel like I don’t have the right to mourn or be sad because I was the one who said it’s over. In reality I know that is nonsense, I have just as much right as anyone to be sad about the ending of the relationships I worked hard on and put so much energy into the past months to years, but it’s difficult not to feel like I should not feel the way I do.

My heart aches for both of them every day. I have dreams about them and talk about them all the time. While I seem to be able to maintain a friendship with Onyx the possibility of that with Marla is extremely unlikely, next to impossible at this point really. I’m still somewhat in shock from everything that has happened, still very numb, still haven’t processed everything, and still don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t know if I can stay here in Alaska or if I have another option at this point.

Their relationship wasn’t as deep as the ones I had with each of them. This is the longest Onyx and I have been away from each other in four years, and that alone would be enough to cripple me but that combined with being so far from Marla and knowing that I have and continue to hurt her just makes everything unbearable, to the point I have a hard time getting out of bed a lot of days. My motivation is shot and I’m just generally down.

While I was the one who called it quits, it wasn’t because I don’t want to be with either of them, if anything it’s because I want to be with both of them but had to make a choice. I love them both very much and will continue to love them, but the circumstances are such that I can’t be with either of them right now. I have high hopes for the future, and I feel like I survived one of the worst poly situations possible (not the only bad one, of course, and probably not the worst) so that’s something at least.

One of the biggest lessons that I learned from everything that has happened is I cannot be responsible for the emotions or emotional well being of others. It is something I have always done and probably will continue to do, but it is something I am working on. While this doesn’t mean I don’t care about the emotions of others or that I would stop empathizing or anything it does mean that I need to accept I cannot change their emotions or even help if they will not let me and that it is not responsibility to hold back my own feelings for the sake of someone elses (I’m still working on that last part).

I guess it’s self-explanatory to an extent, but for as long as I can remember I’ve taken on the responsibility of making sure everyone around me is happy, often to the detriment of my own happiness and well-being. I can’t say this will stop, but at least I’m going to be more aware of it. I also don’t think that wanting the people you love to be happy is a bad thing, but there is a point where it can be taken too far, especially if those around you are not willing or not wanting to change.

I am responsible, however, to my reactions to new relationship energy (NRE). I love NRE. I love the feeling of a new relationship, the excitement, the passion, the discovery, everything. This is dangerous, and something I want to go into more depth in another post, and I think this is the reason why we moved so quickly into everything.

It is easy for me to get caught up in a new relationship, I have discovered, and I also have a tendency to be a bit of a chameleon, changing myself to fit my partner’s desires without any conscious intent or effort on my part. This doesn’t work well when multiple partners with vastly different desires come into play.

So, I’m working on discovering myself outside of relationships, focusing on what I want and what I need both here and now and in the future. I have been so aimless since I graduated that I have lost sight of a lot of things, and it’s time to get that back.

Disconnected

I’ve been feeling disconnected with the world lately, both offline and on. A lot of this started when the triad formed, but also it has been going on increasingly since I stopped working and this long over-a-year that I haven’t been able to get a job.

I was so hopeful for a job I interviewed for last Friday. I have yet to hear back and that is sinking me down into sadness. Couple that with both my partners being distant and on-edge and I don’t know what to do with myself most of the time.

I’m writing this from the park, a wonderful place for some introspection and thought. The world around me feels more and more like a mystery every day, and I continually feel unable to grasp it, like the tangible reality I built over the last however many years is slipping away from me and I’m not sure how to get it back. How can I connect with a world that doesn’t seem to want me or work for me? I’m trying to figure this out. The only answer I have come to is to build a new world around me, so I’m trying to do just that.

I’m having a difficult time with it, though. Looking back I have reconstructed my reality multiple times. Every time I move or any of those fundimental aspects of my life change: location, company, desires, work. They all seem to be minor changes compared to now, but maybe every change seems minor in heindsight.

But, this is about disconnection, which is also about change, and loss, and pain. I aspire to such great things but don’t know how to get my footing in the now in order to achieve them. I live by trial and error these days, awash in uncertainty and trying to find pleasure in every day no matter how disconnected I feel.

I need grounding, something to prove to me that what I’m doing is right, is working, but I think I can only find that in myself.

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