Books Books Books

Fully stocked up on books again, here’s the stack that’s sitting on my table. Summer reading is awesome!

  1. the girl who fell from the sky – heidi w. durrow
  2. the firm – john grisham
  3. the vagina monologues – eve ensler
  4. rose madder – stephen king
  5. delta of venus – anaïs nin
  6. the visible man – chuck klosterman
  7. message in a bottle – nicholas sparks
  8. timeline – michael crichton
  9. zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance – robert m. pirsig
  10. the bell jar – sylvia plath
  11. she comes first – ian kerner

I’ve also had some inquiries as to other books I would recommend reading. I feel like I’ve written about that pretty recently re: sex/love but here are the books that I’ve read so far this year. In order of reading, too!

  1. Steve Jobs
  2. The Walking Dead I
  3. Hey, wait…
  4. Open: Love, sex, and life in an open marriage
  5. Damned
  6. The future of us
  7. Is everyone hanging out without me?
  8. Opening Up
  9. The Help
  10. The God Part of The Brain
  11. The Hunger Games
  12. Sacred Marriage
  13. Delusions of Gender
  14. On Writing
  15. Love in Abundance
  16. The Language of Flowers
  17. Room
  18. Sexual Intelligence
  19. Some Girls
  20. The Pagoda
  21. Book of Salt
  22. Funny Boy
  23. Stuck Rubber Baby
  24. Fifty Shades I, II, III
  25. The Defining Decade
  26. The Passion
  27. Just One Look
  28. Watchers
  29. Bag of Bones
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oral sex, sperm, and fetishes.

my boyfriend says that if he busts a huge load earlier in the day and we have sex later on- i’m not going to get pregnant because he’s already expelled all the sperm…. seems ignorant to me or is he on to something?

One hundred percent false. He’s either trying to trick you into having unprotected sex, or he’s ignorant about how sex works. Either way, no good. Have a talk about safer sex. Pronto. Planned Parenthood is a great resource for this, as is Scarleteen. I’d be glad to answer any questions you or he have as well.

what is the best way to tell your partner about a foot fetish

When you’re hanging out together and talking, tell your partner that you want to tell them something but you’re nervous about it and aren’t sure what they’re going to think about it. I would suggest preparing for the possibility that they’re going to be put off by it or not understand. Have an explanation on hand as why you like it, or how it gets you off, or what exactly a foot fetish would mean for them as your partner.

is it true that there has been a rise in the number of men with throat cancer due to men having oral sex with girls more often

I have read reports that throat cancer is on the rise, due to HPV, and oral sex. The most comprehensive article I found was at the NYT, click here to read.

Have a question? I’ll answer it on my blog. Submit to my formspring.

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Infidelity: Why Do People Cheat and How Does It Feel?

Infidelity is one of those taboo subjects that fascinates me, especially around this time of year as the seasons change and there seems to be noticeable spike in utter dispair. What has always frustrated me, personally, is our reaction to cheating. Using one of my favorite terms, what is the script for cheating? How do we deal with a broken heart? And why?

Obviously no one situation is the same, but it makes sense to feel hurt and betrayed when someone you care about hurts you. For the purpose of this post, lets define infidelity as when a partner in a relationship is physically or emotionally intimite with another person in such a way that they know is not appropriate for having a significant other. They lie, hide, and effectively “cheat” the relationship in order to obtain the outside satisfaction.

This definition excludes one possibility. What if you cheat, but you didn’t know you were cheating? This is an interesting one because most people enter into a relationship assuming that they have the same needs and desires. Much of “relationship politics” goes undiscussed because of the scripts already in place for a traditional relationship. For instance: When you start to date someone there is a nonverbal code for most people that says you will not sleep with someone else. The problem with this is that not everyone abides by the same rules and codes, and even if they do, it is not always apparent when you are switches from “friends” to “going on dates” and “dating” or “monogamous” – sometimes it needs to be verbalized.

The benefit that alternative couples have is that they must design the rules of their relationship. I believe that every couple should do this, even if they are wanting to be a “traditional” couple. What does a relationship mean to you? What does cheating look like to you? What is comfortable and what is not? What are your boundaries? What do you want and what don’t you want? It might sound silly, but I think it’s an important step in having your needs clearly communicated. You should only need to do this once as you become monogamous, perhaps again later on if your relationships shifts, or changes.

But lets stick with this model of pain and heartbreak, because that’s what really pisses people off. I would never condone cheating, and I agree with most people. Just don’t cheat. Don’t do it. There isn’t any reason to. If you’re unhappy, if you want something more, leave your partner and have that thing. But unfortunately for anyone who has ever had their heart broken (or has ever cheated) life isn’t simple. It’s sticky, messy, and decisions are made in the heat of confusion. I don’t think people who cheat are assholes. I don’t think cheating makes you an asshole. I think people who cheat made a bad decision and I think the factors that led up to that point are far more interesting than the actual physical or emotional act of infidelity. I also think that the act of cheating tears up the people who did it almost as much as the people who were cheated on. You know, spare the small percentage of people who just don’t give a shit. But lets not talk about them.

So, I decided to ask some people who cheated why they did it and how it felt. Mostly in an attempt to understand, but also in an attempt to humanize. We all say it could never happen to us until it does. No one gets into a relationship with the expectation that their partner might be unfaithful to them. We have hope, and we trust, and we’re blind to the faults in ourselves and our relationships. So lets look closer.

I decided the easiest way, without sharing too much, would be to bullet the key points that I grabbed. I’m doing this right now without having really thought about them, so I can look back at the bullet points afterwards to see if there are any themes.

  • I was at the end of a very long relationship that was heading south
  • I was looking for excuses to not be around my partner anymore
  • When I was cheating, I had a moment of clarity, it was wrong
  • I felt guilty after doing it, I knew it wouldn’t happen again
  • It made me realize how bad the sex in my relationship was
  • I had my heart broken and I dated many women at once
  • All of the women I’ve been with have taught me something important
  • I knew we were going to break up, but I wanted to make it work
  • I felt bad afterwards, I still loved him
  • It made me wonder why my partner wasn’t that physical with me
  • I found out I was being cheated on, so I decided to do what I wanted
  • The physical and emotional chemistry between us was so intense
  • I continued to emotionally cheat on my partner and my relationship felt toxic
  • I wanted to be with someone while I waited for someone else
  • I was very afraid of getting caught, very afraid of of regretting it
  • In the moment I was excited because it felt taboo and naughty
  • I felt bad for cheating, just because my partner did, didn’t mean I had to
  • I like how it reaffirms my masculinity to flirt with women
  • My sexual drive is stronger than my partners
  • I like discovering what buttons to push with new partners
  • I started to tell myself the relationship was over
  • I didn’t cheat until I knew the relationship was already over
  • I started to cheat to help me move on from my relationships
  • It made me feel unloved and used
  • Doing it once made it easier to do again
  • It was drunken stupidness
  • Cheating was not a good way to start a new relationship, I felt guilty

Alright, so there are some themes I’m picking out from these stories. First and foremost, almost everyone who messaged me cheated when they felt that their relationship was already over, which I thought was really interesting. I’m guessing that this is a case of being afraid to leave something or someone because you’ve been in it for so long. Getting caught up in a long term relationship – it can be hard to imagine how you’ll live or function without your partner, even if you’re unhappy. It can be too easy to get what out need outside of the relationship, rationalizing that you’re no longer in love and so it doesn’t even matter. For some, it can be an excuse to be a better partner. You’re getting your needs met outside of the relationship, so you can be a better husband or wife (or boyfriend/girlfriend) to your partner.

Second, almost every single person expressed guilt in what they’d done, whether or not they had enjoyed the experience. There were a lot of negative emotions and remorse associated to cheating. They did not enjoy the fact that they had hurt their partner, and they noted that the physical or emotional act of cheating hurt themselves, as well.

Lastly, the cheating helped people realize things about themselves and their relationships. For those who hadn’t already realized that their relationship was over prior to cheating, cheating helped them: end their relationship, move into new relationships, help them feel loved or cared for. It also made them feel poorly about themselves, created a cycle of need/dependency, or showed them just how poor their current sex lives were.

It’s obvious to me that cheating is a double sided coin. People are unhappy in their relationships and so they step out of their relationships either

1) As a way to end their relationship

2) As a way to find exactly what they are missing in their relationship

So how do we prevent cheating if it hurts ourselves and our partners? What are the alternatives? How do we make the alternatives more appealing, since people know there are other options? Endorse communication. This means talking to your partner about what makes you unhappy, about what your needs are. That means saying painful things like “I don’t like the sex, but I like you” or “I don’t feel anything with you anymore, I’m not sure if this relationship is going to survive.” And, of course, being your own advocate. Do you want to stay in the relationship? If not, how can you get out of it without making decisions that hurt you, and your partner?

And, as the person who was cheated on,  understand the reasons that your partner cheated on you. As you can see from above, infidelity doesn’t automatically mean that your partner doesn’t love you. Sometimes infidelity just means that your partner loves you, but isn’t happy in the relationship, and needs something. What does your partner need? Can you two make it work? Can you rebuild the trust that was lost as they were looking for what they needed?

I thought that the submissions were very interesting. Thank you very much to everyone who shared your stories with me and everyone else. If you did not get your submission in to me on time, I would be more than happy to publish your story anonymously on my blog if it’s something you want to share with other people. Email me at suggestivetongue@gmail.com

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when happy relationships end

Hi. After reading your last few responses, I was wondering if you could explain the psychology behind something I, and my guy friend, do. Ex: I meet a nice guy, he is polite, interesting, everything is fine, brings me flowers, the perfect bf material, but I get bored and have to break it off. My guy friend had the perfect gf for a year, she cooked and cleaned for him, his parents loved her, they got along great, breaks it off for no reason he can explain coherently. I bring him up because I thought I only did that. Why do people end relationships that are, to the outside world, fine? I mean my ex and I had great sex, communicated well, but there was something missing. I’m assuming same thing with my friend and his ex gf. What is that thing that people want in a relationship? Sorry if im too vague. You’re really well-read in psychology and very knowledgeable so I was wondering if you could provide some insight. Thank you so much.

This question makes a lot of sense, thanks for asking it! There are a whole bunch of things that could contribute to something like this happening, and you’re definitely not alone. So many relationships end without there necessarily being a “falling out.” I really enjoy what (now several) people say about the end of relationships. A relationship that ends is not a relationship that has failed. You always, always gain something from the people that you’re with. You become stronger and smarter in your dating styles and you really learn what you want as an individual in a relationship. So, I suppose that is your simple answer. Sometimes seemingly good relationships just end. Who says a good relationship has to last forever? A confusing sentiment to make, but an interesting one. No relationship lasts forever until it does.

Here are my actual thoughts to your question in reference to why this might be happening.

What you’re looking for 

Like I said above, you learn what you’re looking for in a relationship mostly through experience. You have some good dates, you have some bad dates, you figure out what your needs are. Sometimes two people get along very well and appear to be the perfect couple, but inside are fighting some sort of battle with themselves. It makes them happy (perhaps) but it doesn’t fulfill all of their needs.

Not ready to settle

Some people find themselves in wonderful relationships but hit a point of conflict. They’re in love, but they don’t want to give up on the benefits of being young and/or single. That could include continuing to explore what their needs are, having casual sexual/intimate relationships with other people, or having more independence and freedom before they feel like they need to “settle” with someone. Someone who lives a very active and busy lifestyle could also fit into this category. A relationship isn’t their main priority, or they feel like they aren’t ready to have that relationship be their main priority.

People change

People change. Particularly in their mid to late 20s when they’re finishing school or figuring out what they want to do for the rest of their lives. They become, for the most part, who they’re going to be for the rest of their lives. Their personality solidifies. They lose a lot of the “discovery” phase that hits so hard. There is some leveling out. If you’re with someone during this time it can be particularly difficult if your partner becomes someone that you’re not familiar with. They might decide they have major life goals that make your relationship difficult to maintain. They may develop their personality further in a way that confuses you or you’re not used to. If you want to be with someone through this period you may have to deal with loving your partner as a different/changed person. Getting over that hump can shake up otherwise well stabilized and setup couples.

The Honeymoon Phase

The most obvious one on the list is the honeymoon phase. You’re with someone and everything is new and exciting and wonderful and you’re learning and exploring and your chemicals are all crazy and your brain is pumped up… and then your hormones level out, you become used to your partner, and despite a maintained level of happiness/contentment, you realize that things have changed. It doesn’t matter that you’re happy necessarily, that initial excitement is gone and that can be disconcerting for a lot of people. What does it mean? Do I still love them? Am I really happy?

Grass is Greener

This leads perfectly into the grass is greener thought. We believe that other people must be more perfect or more exciting than our current partner. That’s simply because we don’t know their own faults yet. Sure – someone else could be a better fit for us, but why does that lead us to leave our current partners if they’re making us perfectly happy already? Is it to just see whats out there? Is it the endless curiosity if you’ve settled too soon, or for not enough? This is where you’ll see a bit of regret in couples who break up and explore new options and realize, clearly, that the next person is just as human as the last.

They’re not actually happy together

Any couple can look like a good couple on the outside, but a smile and a laugh between two people who happen to like the same things and hang out in the same crowd doesn’t necessarily mean they’re happy together. Maybe they’re just happy people. There are people that you can love, and like, and have sex with, but none of those things necessarily mean that the relationship is a fully functioning one that satisfies what they’re looking for in a relationship.

What is “happy” – ?

What does happy look like? A lot of “happy” can be pulled down into non-verbal communication. You smile, you laugh, you spend lots of time with someone, you tell people that you are good, fine, great, or you’re constantly busy and trying new things. Your definition of “happy” or “fulfilled” might not be the same as the next person. That’s why it’s so hard to look at someone and determine whether or not they’re actually happy. We think that if we have X and Y we’d be happy, so we presume that people who already have X and Y must be happy. That isn’t always the case.

 

Ultimately I think in most cases otherwise well-off relationships simply end because they’ve run their course. The chemistry dies down, they got what they needed, they realize they want something else. This rounds right back to the intro. Who is to say that a relationship that worked out that well “failed” in some way?

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Love in Abundance / Jealousy

I promised I’d be back with part two notes (see here for part one) on jealousy.

I wanted to start with what was an interesting and simple realization. In response to: “how do you deal with jealousy?” as the most asked question in open relationships I realized an excellent retort is how do you? It’s easy to forget that while jealousy is particularly present in non-monogamous relationships, it’s also ever-present in monogamous relationships as well. The difference is that in an open-relationship each partner is required to tackle the jealous feelings. In your typical monogamous relationship, no such rules for jealousy exist. (And if they do they typically play off of unhealthy ideas, like not trusting your partner, being angry that they treated you poorly when perhaps they did nothing wrong, or a miscommunication of appropriate boundaries.)

Now to some legit notes:

She introduced Freud’s 4 components of jealousy, which I hadn’t heard before or had forgotten. The four components are:

  1. Grief- The pain we get when we feel we’ll lose someone we love. (Grief-stricken feeling)
  2. The distressing realization that we cannot have everything we want even if we feel we deserve it.
  3. Enmity towards the person or thing that we feel will steal the person we love.
  4. A turning of our anger inward, we believe that we must be inadequate.

These were interesting to hear from Freud because they’re hard to argue. How many of us have felt as though we were losing the grasp on something by a real or imagined force? These four steps also compare quite well to the stages of grief.

Then of course there is the Darwinian perspective, which I’ve written about before re: evolutionary psychology. Men are more influenced by the physical or threat of, women more influenced by the emotional or threat of. For instance: a woman may be jealous if her partner has been talking to another girl off and on even if in his mind “nothing has happened so there was nothing to tell” – because, for her, the talking in itself is an emotional connection worth sharing. For him, her attraction to or desire for another man is more threatening. From the evolutionary standpoint it is based in the idea that men want paternal assuredness (know their child is theirs) and women want a mate who they know will stick around (help tend to kids.) It’s all about furthering the species, and you can take it or leave it as a plausible theory.

Two types of jealousy (Ayala Pines) — Acute (situational) and Chronic (all the time.)

There is an idea that whatever made you fall in love with the person you’re with is what is threatened when you feel jealous. I’m not sure I connected to that or agreed with that, but it’s definitely a great point for thinking about where the feelings come from.

What felt better for me, though, was jealousy as a fire alarm. It doesn’t mean your house (relationship) is on fire, but you should pay attention and see where the smoke is coming from.

Har har, clever, right?

Rather than the idea of what made you fall in love with someone, I liked the idea of picturing an encounter with your partner + someone else. It’s likely not the idea of your partner with someone else that hits the jealousy button, but one or two things in particular about it. Whether it be them sharing something special that is just for you (a favorite restaurant dinner date, kissing, oral sex, taking vacations together, wearing each others clothes, whatever!) those one or two things might be trigger points.

You can then decide if you want to follow the engineering model (avoid the triggers that set off the jealousy by making new boundaries) or the phobia model (expose yourself to the jealousy to remove the emotional trigger.) The second one is much like flooding therapy.

What is important is breaking down what jealousy really means: anger, fear, hurt, betrayal, anxiety, agitation, sadness, paranoia, depression, loneliness, envy, coveting, self-loathing, feeling powerless, feeling inadequate, feeling excluded, etc. If you cannot break down your emotion to explain where the feeling comes from, you’re leaving your partner (and yourself) with a surface feeling, and a surface explanation, which will not aid to finding a fix to the problem.

What do you do if your partner is the jealous one? – Equally (or more) important to knowing how to communicate your feelings/experience clearly is being able to handle your partner coming to you with emotions. I really like how she laid out how to deal with a jealous partner.

1. Listen to your partners words, non-verbal, and actions.

2. Do not interrupt, but help them articulate what they’ve said when it’s your turn. (I would add “mirroring” to this – say what they said back to them, and ask them if it’s correct.)

3. Ask if their jealousy comes from fear, anger, sadness…

4. Break down those emotions more.

5. Tell them that you’ve heard and understood them, acknowledge their emotions. Even if you don’t agree with them, or find that they are over-exaggerating. Let them have their experience. Let them know that you can see they are in pain and that you know how they got there.

6. Validate their emotions. Don’t try to fix them, make them go away, challenge the rational, or minimize.

7. Take responsibility for any part you might have played, apologize where necessary. Find where you could modify your behavior.

8. Do not be defensive or argue. Do not justify your behavior.

9. Ask them if they will listen to your feelings and your perspective.

10. Let it blow over – talk more afterwards.

She refers to it as a jealousy attack, comparable to an “anxiety attack” – just like you can’t tell someone to “just breathe” you can’t tell someone to “just calm down” – it is a better idea to let them experience the attack while you are there, listening, and then speak more after the attack is over.

To prevent jealousy and find satisfaction it’s important to know how much personal privacy, autonomy, control over life, intimacy, togetherness, and merging of lives you and your partner want. On a scale of 0 (24/7 freedom) and 10 (joined at hip) where do you want to be, and where does your partner? She says anything 2 and below is not a relationship, really, and anything 8 and above is going to be suffocating. If you are a 3 and your partner is a 7, there is going to be a struggle.

You are also going to likely misinterpret each other if you’re looking for different types of relationships in terms of freedom/togetherness. If you are a 7 and your partner is a 2, you might feel that they don’t care to see you. On the other hand, your partner might deem you to be possessive or controlling.

These misinterpretations can lead to unstableness in the relationship, and can lead to breakups if each partner can’t find a balance between their needs and their partners needs.

Marriage Maintenance Affair: — This is actually something Dan Savage has talked about and seemingly supports. An example would be if you are married, want to stay married, but you really really like BDSM and your partner doesn’t. Your partner also does not approve of you going outside of the relationship. You have a MMA and occasionally (not minimizing nor taking from your marriage) have these needs met elsewhere, and in turn you are a better husband (father/partner/etc) and your marriage is able to thrive. This is a controversial one because it encourages infidelity as a means to an end.

Lastly, NRE: New Relationship Energy. In open relationships when your partner finds someone new that they want to spend a lot of time with, this can be difficult on the other partner. What is important to remember is that the “shiny new toy” only appears to be so because you have not yet learned their faults. They are put on a pedestal. A partner might feel demoted (I am no longer the one and only) – displaced (the outside relationship is crowding the primary one) – or intruded (my time should be my time, don’t tend to outside relationships when you’re with me.) Remember that it might take time for your relationship to adjust to these new factors, and your partner is likely not trying to upset you. Give them get out of jail free cards while they learn to balance your primary relationship and the new interests they have.

If you are “the other” in an open relationship, it is important to create your own full life, and to find satisfaction. Possible seek other relationships if being a part-time partner with someone in an open relationship is not enough for you.

/end notes

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Fix it up or break it down.

My girlfriend cheated and lied but she wants me back. I still love her. What do I do? I don’t know if I can trust her anymore. 

I think what is more important is the intent of the cheating and the lying, not the cheating and the lying within itself. It makes perfect sense that you still love her in despite of that, love can grab onto you and take a long time to fade no matter what someone does to you. But does she love you, too? Or does she want you back because you are familiar, and safe, and she remembers that you love her and what that felt like? In other words: is the relationship worth something on its own, or are you both trying to live out what it once was?

I don’t think everyone who cheats or lies doesn’t love their partner anymore, so take some time to find a good place mentally with that. Some people have zero tolerance and that’s plenty fine but there are tons of salvageable relationships that go through this that come out OK on the other end.

I would suggest seeing a counselor both alone and together and work to the core of why she lied and cheated to begin with. Is it because she felt something was missing from the relationship? Is it because she fell out of love with you and didn’t want to admit it to herself? Is it because she fell in love with someone else? Is it because she was drunk and horny and had a moment of weakness, physically? Is it because the two of you don’t communicate well about wants, needs, and desires? Is it something else? The answer is rarely “My partner cheated on me because they’re a lying bitch and they don’t love me anymore” because most people are not so evil, particularly not to people that they care about. Things happen, and you have to decide if those things are representative of the relationship being over, or larger problems within the relationship itself.

Obviously there are communication problems at the very least. Everything else is up to your and your partner to work through. Whether you stay together, take some time apart, or work together on strengthening the relationship and repairing the damage done, make sure the decision is right for the both of you and truly a healthy decision. Don’t just make it work because the pain of being together sounds better than the pain of being alone.

If that trust can’t be rebuilt and those underlying problems can’t be examined, you’re probably going to find yourselves right back in the same situation all over again – or you’re both going to be unhappy.

Note: I know I said I was going to have time to answer the rest of the questions in my formspring, but I overestimated my free time. I know they’re there, I’m working on responses! If you really need a faster response please email me at suggestivetongue@gmail.com and I’ll respond via email. Thanks!

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Psychology of Love

Hi there, could you recommend some books on the psychology of love and relationships? Or any good psychology reads? Thank you so much for your time. 🙂

  • Opening Up
  • Open
  • Mating in Captivity
  • Shameless
  • Just Marriage
  • Lust in Translation
  • The Brain That Changes Itself
  • Committed
  • The Ethical Slut
  • The Brain in Love
  • The Commitment
  • Sex at Dawn

Those are all the books I could think of that I’ve read that fit that umbrella. The two that probably best fit your question are The Brain in Love and Sex at Dawn. The Brain in Love attempts to look at love from a neuro standpoint by considering hormones and brain anatomy. This sort of thing is pretty big in the media lately because everyone wants to know how their brains compare and how knowing what your brain does and how it works can give you an up in love. It’s a fun read, but be careful to remember that it’s only one perspective in a huge umbrella of perspectives. A lot of this research is relatively new. Sex at Dawn comes more from the evolutionary psych standpoint looking at why we love the way we love and why we love who we love. It has a focus on non-monogamy and why we end up cheating or being cheated on, but the content of the book includes so much more.

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Gay Marriage and Sad People

The gay marriage bill has passed in Washington State and should be signed into law sometime next week, making Washington the seventh state to legalize gay marriage. Yeah, 7th. If I needed any reminder as to why I’m still writing about this, that’ll do it. Remember, there are 50 states. 7/50. This is not a passing grade, America. [source]

But theres no need for me to sit here and talk about how cool this is, lets refocus on someone who doesn’t think it’s cool. That’s where the energy should be directed. No sense in sitting in a circle high-fiving each other for being awesome when theres work to be done!

How about Rep Jay Rodne? He thinks that gay marriage “severs the cultural, historical and legal underpinnings of the institution of marriage.”

Let’s show him a nice thick book on marriage as it was an exchange of property, that’ll be fun. How about how homosexuality wasn’t even considered an identity as it is now until the early 19th century. People just called it man on man butt cuddling or knitting club or whatever the hell they did in the privacy of their own bedrooms, you know why? Because no one gave a shit if scissoring meant you were a lesbian, and then a dyke, and then incapable of love or whatever other presumptions we now place on what being gay “means.”

He goes on to say that “It contravenes human nature and it will hurt families and children.”  Which… I don’t know, do these people like… think? Read? Have sense? Care? Contemplate? Have critical discourse about the state of humanity? Did anyone watch that episode of Doctor Who “The Girl in the Fireplace” where the clockwork androids walk around in people clothes? Can someone update these politicians to their 2012 settings? Maybe a good place to start would be focusing on the well being of all children, including those stuck in abusive “culturally acceptable and historically sound” families.

End Rant

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the other triangle of love

If you’ve been reading my blog for any span of time, you’ll know that I love the triangular theory of love. In Sex & The Family the other day, we learned about another important triangle. This triangle is more closely associated to what you’d call your sexual orientation.

 

 

  1. Identity
  2. Behavior
  3. Feelings
At first glance it may be apparent to you that these things should match up. At least, that’s how I felt. My identity is related to both my behavior and my feelings, right? I mean –  I am who I am, so what I think and feel must fit under that umbrella.
But how about a woman who identifies as straight, but likes women?
What about a gay man who is married and has sex with his wife?
In turn we found that the triangle may not have all equal sides. One may identify as a lesbian, or gay, or bi-sexual, but their behavior may not match what we would consider “appropriate” for this label. One might also have feelings that do not match up exactly with their behavior or their identity.
What I grabbed as most important from the lecture is that you cannot assume ones identity by what they do or how they feel. You can’t label someone as gay because they “act gay” because those are only our assumptions based on what we’ve been told someone who is gay is supposed to do. Certainly many people may identify with an orientation and their behavior/feelings shift more fluidly or easily than their identity does (an identity can be a difficult thing to alter) but that’s their decision, and ultimately they are the only one who can know.
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on the sadness of cold hearted bitches who don’t know it

Something about men needing fixing.

I know it’s neither appropriate nor dishonest to say, but I enjoy a good challenge. In High School I spent a lot of time with the sad boys, adding my own secret ingredients to the mixing pot of their dispair. I was the hot pink band-aid I applied to their festering wounds that they ripped off, quite painfully so, every time they went home and cried in bed at night. And yet, not once, no never, did they let me know that all of their self-loathing really came from the lack of attention they got when they were happy.

There is a fine line between just sad enough that people want to fix you and so sad and pathetic that no one wants to be around you, and people find themselves walking into the walls of these mazes quite frequently as they look for the perfect spot of seduction. Tend to me for I am broken but I am so happy in my wandering.

They always wear dark colors and have hobbies that you read about in books but don’t really care about in real life, like programming or golf. Some of them talk about how they used to scuba dive in some former life you hardly relate to their current self.

Some people are left-overs of who they used to be, rotting away in a shell so easily compared to the cold and sticky outside of a refrigerator. Slam.

Nobody really cares.

Some people are used as tools by other people because they can’t see the line between sadness and actual need for human empathy. Everyone is sad. Sadness is unexceptional. The sky is grey and you’re lonely and drunk and you hate yourself and that’s great. Write a novel about it.

But the true need for human empathy often reaches that point where no one wants to be around you. Where they feel you sucking the life out of them, too, in that desperation to just feel someone else near you. And unknowing of these difference between “sad” and “desperate” or “nerdy” and “guy with nerdy glasses” we find ourselves trapped in boxes that no one told us if we walked into them we’d get stuck. Trapped.

Hitting walls now as you could care less about love, or connection, or seduction, but simply escape from your own personal hell that you’ve crafted the best way you knew how.

So these sad boys left one by one and I discounted them as careless of me, because how easily they could leave without a second glance backwards. I thought they needed me but really I needed them. To remind me that there were people out there much sadder and lonelier than I was. And of course, that to need and be needed back is only truly revolutionary is neither one of you ever really desires more than simply that.

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