alone

August 13, 2013

There is something about being home alone that is just too great for words.

I just want to run around naked yelling WOO HOO until that gets old, then sit down with chips and whiskey and watch TV.

I don’t have TV.

However, I do have whiskey. And my roommates are out picking up dinner, so I will hold off on the chips.

For now.

I am reading Caitlin Moran’s How to be a woman and enjoying myself.  I am imagining that I have a friend like this, feminist and hilarious and saying things I can agree with at least 80 percent of the time.

I admin a small group of atheists.  I’m not really in charge of anything so much as I bake cookies and have people over.  However the group has managed to attract not one, but two abused women.

Now really, I don’t mean to complain.  I have been in an abusive relationship myself, and it’s not like I hold it against them.  I get it.  I get it in a way that they might not appreciate, not now, when there’s this male overlord of their life and they are refusing to look that reality in the face.  I get it.

It’s just that I have this crazy idea that maybe, most women are not in abusive relationships.  Maybe they are single and maybe not, but they are respected and appreciated, and people of all genders are generally kind and considerate toward each other.

I had this crazy idea that I could start this group and we would be a bunch of somewhat-literate, thinking, rational atheists who get together and watch movies and chat and eat chips and drink whiskey together.

So far the group has attracted two odd couples and a few single males.

There’s a woman my age who hasn’t been employed a day in her life, I don’t think.  She’s recently had a baby and is quite happy, but I’m not sure her husband is such a nice person.

There’s a young woman who’s a few years out of high school.  She was in the foster care system and eventually adopted.  She’s very clever, got a 4.0 in high school, and she’s with a guy who I really dislike but I am trying very hard to be fair.  He is unemployed and a caricature of a libertarian; she is, like I said, very clever and wants to go to school and be a programmer.  Her boyfriend wants her to do some team-truck-driving thing with him.  It’s his dream.

Sorry.  I’m trying to be fair.

What I’m getting at is, I’m tired of abuse and manipulation and lazy entitled males who get away with it and always will.

I was chatting with one of my roommates last night about how these dudes can get away with it, the abuse I mean.  And he said, “It all goes back to the fear of being cheated on.”

“Well,” I answered, “I guess that’s why I don’t get it.  Because I don’t fear that.”

That’s not literally true.  I would hate to be cheated on, and I would probably end a relationship if I’d been cheated on (again) (as my ex-husband did).

But have you ever seen those Twitter tags that go something like, #myboyfriendbetternot and it’s always about cheating, or looking at another girl, or texting, etc.

And that is just not the first thing that pops into my head.  “My boyfriend better not think I’m gonna do his laundry!”

But as I thought about it, I remembered my ex.

He’d confessed to his godsister that he’d cheated on me.  It had happened before we got married.  She told him he had to tell me.  So he took her advice.

And I’m no psychiatrist, but when he told me that, I think I just shut down.

“Do you forgive me?” he asked.

Yeah, sure.

I mean, what could I do about it at this point?  I’d already traded my professional-level job for a high-school-level position.  I’d married him and moved in with him.  Really, what was I supposed to do?  We were married.  I knew what that meant.  I had to forgive him.  Had to, or else all kinds of things would happen that were 100 percent against my programming as a Christian female.

So I forgave him.

And I disconnected some cables in the computer of my brain, if you’ll pardon the dramatic metaphor.

So of course when he confessed to cheating on me again, eight years later, I just stared at the wall and said “Okay.”

How many times do you think he didn’t tell me about?  With that kind of reaction out of me?  He might as well have been telling me that he’d lost the keys to his car but found them a minute later.

So what I’m getting at is, these atheists in the group (my roommate argued) don’t have the security that god is watching the wife, so they feel like they have to use other manipulations to control her.  Because being cheated on is the worst.

But I was just thinking that maybe there’s were some women in the world who might like to be my friend.

And maybe those women wouldn’t have their significant other telling them, “Nobody likes you. You’re crazy and they are just putting up with you.”

Or, if that’s not a relevant method of control: conning her out of her wages and making it so that if she wants to go somewhere, she has to borrow his car because she doesn’t have her own.

I was thinking there would be some women who could come over and run around the house with me and have chips and whiskey.

I think I would be an okay friend.

crying

August 4, 2013

My mom and I go on summer trips every year, and we were on the flight home when we started talking about my divorce a little.

Actually, we’d talked about it on the trip before: the topic came up and I realized I had the perfect opportunity to tell my mom why I’d gotten divorced in a way she could understand.

“Mom, he cheated on me.”

He cheated on me once when we were engaged, and then later, with his godsister’s nanny, in Vegas, while I was home too busy with my job to leave town.  I’d even gotten sick enough to ask him to come home early, and normally that’s the sort of thing he would do, but he didn’t.  I remember thinking that was weird and wondering why he wouldn’t come home to help me.  Turns out, he was cheating on me.

I should also add here that his godsister was actually his ex-girlfriend, and sometimes I wonder if they were sleeping together.

So anyways, my mom was finally starting to get the picture about why I left him and filed for divorce.  I mean, everyone understands “he cheated on me”.  All the other reasons I left him– the actual reasons, mind you, the abuse and misogyny and control and his laziness and entitlement– apparently those are hard to explain and hard to understand.

But then, on the flight home, it came up again, and I think I was starting to get through to my mom about all those other things.  And then I started crying

My mom told me she loved me.

So that was good.

That was on the flight back to Northern California, which is where my mom lives.  I had a brief layover, bought a beer, and then boarded my flight home.

I started crying and could not stop.

I was sitting in between two strangers, trying to be quiet, but my whole body was shaking.  It was one of those hard cries where you really ought to be alone in bed.

My book was good and I kept having breaks where I thought I was done crying, but then I would just start up again.  Finally I started playing a tower defense game on my phone and that succeeded in distracting me.

So… I guess it was a good vacation.

kind design

January 26, 2013

I am watching one of the dogs play with a cricket. 

She’s not eating it… she’s playing with it, like it’s a toy, or maybe a little friend.

However I do not think the cricket is enjoying it.

I wonder if the cricket (or the dog, for that matter) is consciously aware that this is a cruel world.

Instead of intelligent design, I’d rather have kind design.

here in Heaven

January 24, 2013

I was listening to some older music, and “Come to Jesus” by Mindy Smith is just as beautiful as I remember it.  Also, I started to cry a little when she sang,

here in Heaven we will wait for your arrival
here in Heaven you will finally understand

Religion sure is beautiful sometimes.  Sometimes I miss believing that people were waiting for me and we would all know everything someday.  Reality isn’t so bad, but when you compare it to fantasy, well…

If you get a chance, listen to the song.  It gives me chills, it is so well written.

why women in combat are beside the point

January 23, 2013

Females are allowed to serve in combat now, and this is supposed to be a great thing for females and a win for feminists.

It is not.

Of course it is fantastic that soldiers will be judged on their skills and ability rather than on their sex.  And, of course, females may struggle to qualify for these positions that have opened up– after all, most males don’t qualify for those positions.

Panetta’s decision was obviously a correct move– as long as the qualifications don’t change.  It is a mistake to deny anyone opportunity and prestige before they are even tried.

But it’s still beside the point, and here’s why.

It encourages this idea that females are only good enough if they can do the things males can do.

So if male work is worth more, female work is valued less– just by virtue of it’s being done by a female.

Obviously females should not be rejected from lines of work, or activities, than males traditionally do. 

But think about a nurse, homemaker, secretary, librarian or elementary school teacher.  They are probably female. 

Now if you think about a doctor, lawyer, or university professor, those professions are probably are lot less gendered, but leaning male.

But maybe a computer technician, sports commentator, truck driver– you think male, right?

And if you see a female in those professions, you might think she’s pretty special, because you know she’s probably worked twice as hard for half the credit.

Pilot vs. flight attendant.

Lawyer vs. paralegal.

Doctor vs. nurse.

Do you see where I’m going with this?  The problem isn’t that females aren’t participating in male professions– that can be overcome by females working hard and proving their value.

The problem is that males aren’t participating in female professions.  That would require an enormous change in the way we all value work and gender.

Haven’t you met a male who was great with kids– who would have made a great mother?  But I wonder: as much as he loved his kids and enjoyed making a home and raising them, how long do you think he could stand it, after a lifetime of people teaching and reinforcing the idea that males are providers– that they just don’t do that Why?  Just because!

Have you met a male nurse?  Didn’t you wonder why he wasn’t a doctor– if there was something wrong with him; if he couldn’t cut it, if he was just lazy, or ran out of financial aid or something?

But I bet you didn’t think that about a female nurse.

Myself, I’m a librarian.  And while most of the librarians I’ve worked with have been female, how many library directors do you think were female?

Ah… now we might see some advantage to being a male in a female profession.  But that’s a bit off-topic.

Right now, I’m glad females have another opportunity.  But it still makes me wince.

weddings

January 17, 2013

I get really fucking angry when I see a woman in a wedding dress.

It’s nothing personal.  It’s not about her, or monogamy, or the purity myth (although I certainly have problems with the latter two).

My brother’s wedding did not trouble me.  I am happy for him.

And while I’m sure a lot of my anger comes from the fact that my own marriage didn’t end well and it actually turned out to be quite ugly in the end, that’s not really the problem, either.

Let me back up.

My ex-husband and I eloped.

Hmm, let me back up more.

We met very young, 17 and 18 years old.  We had a lot of fun together; we had good chemistry– not sexual chemistry (more on that later), but just hanging out having fun chemistry.  We both laughed a lot and really enjoyed each other.

So when he joined the military, we agreed that we would remain a couple long-distance.  At one point during our seven-month separation, during a phone call, we talked about getting married, and we got engaged over the phone.

We were Christians, the kind of Christians who practice abstinence, so we didn’t have sex until we were married.

Let me back up a bit more… have you ever heard the term “asexual”?  Not as in the biological definition of reproducing without sex, but as a [sort of] sexual orientation where a person doesn’t feel an urge to have sex, and feels fulfilled and content having a romantic relationship without sex.

Never heard of it?  Well, the only reason I ever heard of asexuality because I think I might actually be asexual.

Do you know how much I wanted to have sex during puberty?  This might sound strange, but I didn’t want to have sex.  Like, with anyone.  I wasn’t even curious enough to masturbate– and that’s not because I was told masturbation is wrong (if I was told that, I don’t remember).  I really just had no sexual urges– not while I was a teenager, and not with any guy I dated.  This was really convenient when you remember I was raised Evangelical Christian– it kept me out of a lot of trouble with my parents.  I just pretty much went along, getting good grades and reading and watching movies with my friends and being home by curfew.  Technically, I didn’t have a curfew.  Didn’t need one.

I was boring.

Let’s talk about sex again.

My ex-husband was not asexual.  Actually, I think he has the opposite problem.  I later found out he cheated on me while he was away at military training.  He had confided in a friend and she thought I should know.  We had been married awhile, at least a year, so it was too late for me to do anything about it.  I was angry, but I didn’t show it.  Plus it was already over and done, so what was I supposed to do about it?  (I still wonder about that.)

So I wasn’t interested in sex… What about the honeymoon?  Must have been fun, right?

The short version is: I was exhausted, and terrified, and not ready.  But he was pushy, so I gave in.  It was absolutely horrible.

He and I went on being married for almost ten years, and we never solved our differences in the bedroom.

The worst part wasn’t our difference in sexual desire.  The worst part is that I went on having sex with him even though I didn’t want to– and the worse part is the he didn’t care.  He really believed that if I didn’t want to have sex with him, that was my problem, and I should have sex with him anyways.  And if I didn’t like it, there was something wrong with me.

So sex was not a joyous union, sweet lovemaking, or a nice fuck, or anything in between.

The worse part again is that I didn’t know there was anything wrong with that.

I mean, I’m sure people in relationships sometimes have sex even though they don’t really feel like it.

But I had a lot of that kind of sex– in fact, I’d say it was exclusively sex that I did not want to have.

Another worse part: he didn’t care.

He thought it was alright to fuck a woman who didn’t want to be fucked by him.

I believe a good man, upon finding out his partner doesn’t feel like sex, will not want to have sexBecause someone not wanting to have sex with you is a turn-off.

Not for my ex-husband.  No problem.

Sometimes I wonder if he was turned on by my unwillingness, and by the pain and humiliation he caused me.  He must have been.

So I was originally talking about weddings and why they anger me.  Let me get back to that by summarizing the effect of my childhood on my marriage:

1. My parents didn’t teach me about sex or sexuality.
2. They didn’t teach me about what to look for in a husband.
3. I was asexual.

Perfect, right?  I was destined to end up with an ideal guy after all that meticulous planning and preparation on my parents’ part.

I may be a little bitter.

So there I was, married to this guy who might have hated me, but loved what I had between my legs.

Every time I saw a love scene in a movie, or read about a love affair in a book, the description would anger and frustrate me.  “Why are they talking about love like that?” I would wonder.  “It’s not really like that.

I spent the majority of my marriage thinking everyone else was wrong about love.

When I finally figured it out, it broke me.

And when I see a woman in a wedding dress, I am angry.

December 28, 2012

December 28, 2012

So.  I haven’t been here for awhile.

I just looked to see when my last update was, and to my surprise, I updated this blog during this last year.

I do not remember doing this.

My mental health has been … unhealthy.

But I’m better!  How do I know?

Well, I don’t.  I guess I have faith.  :D

Just kidding.  I feel much better.  My partners have told me I’m doing much better.  I was pretty fucking crazy, my friends.

I still struggle at work, but often that is my boredom.  And as long as I maintain my 2-cups-a-day coffee habit, I am solid.

I cannot handle responsibility now– I have been like this for a few years now and that is why I, with a Master’s degree, am working a job requiring a high school diploma.  So I deal with the boredom.  Sometimes, I deal with my boredom using Pinterest.

Well, for god’s sake!  They hired me to do a job.  I do it.  And I have hours left over in my day.  I have literally checked my job description to make sure I’m not totally missing something.

So I’ve added tasks and projects.  But nobody cares about them but me.  It’s weird and I don’t really feel motivated.  But I do them.  Usually.

I am in the final stretch of my winter break.  The day after new year’s is back to work.

(I’ve been going back over my old blog entries a little.  This post still makes me cry.)

Let me sum up.

I am 32 years old.

I was raised an Evangelical Christian but I do not believe in any gods now– this has been true for about five-and-a-half years.

(What!  Five years!?)

I have been divorced for almost three years now (longer than that if you count the day the proceedings started) (“proceedings started”… it sounds redundant but it is not.).  My father has since informed me that my ex remarried.  He didn’t even wait a year.  I feel sorry for his new Mrs. 

I am currently in a relationship with one man and one woman.  One of each; the three of us are a couple.  The two of them are married to each other.

Back up!  Two lovers?  I know!  I am so greedy!

My girlfriend invited me to her work Christmas party; her husband would be going too of course.  I didn’t want to go.  The three of us are not generally “out”, especially not to her extremely conservative Christian coworkers.  And I went to her last Christmas party and I don’t want anyone getting any funny ideas.

(If anyone asks, they took me in when I was going through a tough divorce and now they feel sorry for their poor little single friend, alone on Christmas.)

(Not that it’s any of their fucking business, but I want the both of us to stay employed.)

I ended up going to her holiday party, but I was suddenly hit by some depression while I was there.  Plus, fucking cheap wine will be the death of me.  I really shouldn’t drink any wine unless I know for sure it didn’t come from Trader Joe’s.

So it was shitty and I’m not going next year.

Moving on.  I am quite the feminist; one of those people who can’t watch TV without yelling because everything is so wrong– misogynistic, racist, etc.

I guess that’s good enough for a summary.

This weekend, my partners and I are picking up girlfriend’s sister and going to Karaoke/buffet/beer bust. 

Backstory: the sister still lives with abusive mom.  Abusive mom has been bullying Girlfriend about a visit and we decided to visit mom, dad, and sister when we pick up Sister for Karaoke.

Abusive mom is a real piece of work.  I have never heard of anything like this.  I mean, I have dabbled in the abusive spouse literature but not the abusive parent literature, so maybe it’s not so uncommon, but damn.  Just the sound of her voice turns Girlfriend into a pile of goo.  She was crying the other day because, she says, she has no spine when it comes to her mom.  And the first thing that popped into my head was, “But lots of animals don’t have spines!”  And she laughed, and I think I may have been onto something. 

Trouble is, there are any number of ways this visit could go wrong, and Girlfriend will not have the power to get up and leave if her mom ignores, destroys, or detours around her boundaries.  I have her permission to actually drag her out of mom’s house if certain events occur.

So I am getting a little anxious about this.

But!  I admit that it may be a whole barrel of shits and giggles to be “out” with my girlfriend, with her husband standing there, in from of her mom.  I am practically rubbing my hands together with glee over here.  

I guess that’s all.

Oh, I have a blister on my lip due to an infection from my incessant lip-picking.  I really hope it heals before the visit with mom.

Spent over half…

March 20, 2012

Spent over half my day running reports for the boss, then the rest of the day trying to make it through the rest of the day.

Quiet night at home.  I can hear my girlfriend watching LA Ink Episode One on the streaming TV internet machine.  Crickets are chirping in my lizard’s cage.  I booked my summer vacation.  I’m trying to convince Yahoo to give me back access to the email account my ex-husband stole.  Also trying to get into a forum which seems to be having account registration issues.  And I need to figure out why all my RSS feeds stopped updating because Effing Dykes is the only thing getting me through the week sometimes… to say nothing of Sartorialist, with all those lovely people with artistic personal style, total lack of problems except which new designer to buy next, and no problem AT ALL wearing three-inch-heels everywhere.  (I make up stories about the people sometimes.  What can I say: no TV actually does make you more creative.)

And I forgot my password to my actual personal blog with my actual name attached, and I was planning to turn off the stupid Welcome to WordPress!! that is currently living there and put up something a little more professional.

Herbal tea with stevia– okay, I don’t believe in artificial sweeteners but this is just a plant, and the tea smells like a fucking cookie but when I drink the tea it does not taste like a cookie, so it needs sweetener, and you can probably come to your own conclusions about how much sugar I should or should not ingest right now. None, that’s how much.

You know, Kat Von D has quit her jibba jabba, so I think I will go relax now and play Skyrim.  There are homes that I have not burgled yet.

therapy

March 6, 2012

I’ve been having some problems lately and classifying them as “not that bad” even though I know I really ought to get help.  My employer offers this assistance program where they (the program, not my employer) refer me to a mental health specialist, who will give me six or so free sessions.  I really have to do this.  I’ve run down the list of my symptoms and looked online, and I don’t think I can be diagnosed with anything– which is good because I don’t want to be medicated.  At the same time, though, I am aware that I have been self-medicating, and not in a way I can justify as healthy, like being addicted to working out or eating vegetables or something.

Mood swings: not rapid, but definitely pronounced, 2-3 changes per day, and sometimes with a very low mood or a very high mood.  Motivation changes daily.  This is the most distressing thing.

Hungry!  Which makes me anxious because I have been getting squishy.  Not fat, but, you know, softer, which is new for me because I love to lift weights and jog.  The home gym is out of commission for another month or so (home improvement), and I have a gym membership but have a very hard time getting it into my daily schedule in such a way that I can’t get out of it easily… if that makes sense.

Self-medicating.  I go through weeks where I drink every night, and rarely have 3-4 drinks in an evening.  I can abstain from drinking altogether, but the urge is there.

I’m sleeping fine, actually, and sleeping enough, but having a lot of trouble getting up in the morning.

Oh… my memory.  I almost forgot.  (Ha!)  I forget things.  Like, last week, I was at work, and went back to finish a small project I had put aside.  But actually, I was remembering completely wrong: I had already finished the project.  Very weird.

Speaking of work, I’m having trouble managing my different projects.  I try to sit down to sort everything out, but then I get anxious because I’m not actually progressing in any of them.

It’s the anxiety that’s getting me.  Sometimes I just can’t sit still, or can’t concentrate.  It feels like something is wrong, but I can’t articulate it.

And then I randomly, suddenly, remember things about my ex.  For example.

In the first year or two of our marriage, he said to me, “If you ever cheat on me, you want to know what I’ll do?”

“Uh, I’ll never cheat on you.”  I remember he used to ask for regular assurance that I wouldn’t leave him or cheat on him, and he would tell me that he feared that a lot.  Years later he would not ask much at all.  He would also cheat on me, once that I know of.  “But go ahead.”

He said if I ever cheated on him, and then confessed, but wanted to mend the relationship, he would tell me that I had to have anal sex with ten men before he would take me back.  And then, after I did that and went back to him, he would say, “Why would I ever want a slut like you?”

So that’s creepy.  It didn’t creep me out at the time; I was more confused, like, how did you come up with this, and why are you telling me?  Looking back, I wonder if it was supposed to be a warning… I mean obviously it was a warning but did he mean it as a warning for me not to cheat on him?

That whole memory popped into my head Monday on the drive home from work.  My partner gave me a sleeping pill that night.

I try to remind myself that I’m still healing and I need time and rest and safety and security.

But I think I also need therapy.

Community

July 23, 2011

Even though I just watched a TED Talk short about why it’s a bad idea to announce your goals once you’ve made them, I think I better write a bit about the decision I just made.  A couple of things I’ve been trying to think about lately finally became clear, and a question I’ve barely been able to formulate just became answerable– and the answer is…

Background first.

Fact is, I’ve had two nervous breakdowns in the past couple years.  I used to joke to myself, “Wow, I think I’m having a nervous breakdown!”  And then I actually looked up the definition of a nervous breakdown, and… oh.  Um.  Wow.  I am indeed having a nervous breakdown.  For those of you uninterested in clicking on that Wikipedia link, let me sum up.  Nervous breakdown is a layman’s term describing symptoms of anxiety and depression which follows a stressful event– difficulty adapting to a major life change.  It’s a bit like post-traumatic stress disorder, albeit on a smaller scale: I have never been in a war zones.  But seeing as how I lost my faith, then divorced my husband, then quit my job, then moved in with my grandma to help her die of cancer, I think I am qualified for some sort of breakdown.  Or two.

I have since become employed (underemployed, but resignedly so– see above on mental breakdown, and consider my ability to function on a professional level) and survived the probationary period (keeping my chest tat covered and keeping the atheist cat in the bag: success!) (oh and I worked hard, too) (too many parenthesis going on, let me start a new paragraph).

So, depression and anxiety.  It would be silly to take any meds for this, since it’s not like I have a chemical imbalance, I just have plenty to be anxious and depressed about, and I figure time will heal.  I haven’t wanted to read, or write, or play video games much.  I’ve found it hard to get interested in anything or do anything once I get home.  And despite my two lovely housemates, I feel lonely and disconnected.  I mean, going to church isn’t really an option.  And I am trying to keep things professional at work since it is a small gossipy workplace and I don’t want it to come out that I’m an atheist or a big ol’ queer.

Oh, I haven’t mentioned the queer thing on the blog.  Well, trust me: I do not have a conventional sexuality.  Teh Gays disapprove of me.  I’ll leave it at that for now.

So, being lonely is a big factor in my life.

Oh, and, some lab results just came in and I have a slight B-12 deficiency.  And I’m not even vegetarian!  But that would partially explain my fatigue.  And, even weirder, I have slightly high levels of bilirubin, which may or may not mean I have jaundice.  Jaundice!!  The doctor specifically told me this was not a big deal at the moment, and that I need more tests done before he knows for certain.  But … jaundice!  The head spins.

All of this– nervous breakdowns, fatigue, and lab tests– led me to the question I mentioned above: what am I going to do about my social needs?  Well, the answer, duh: the internet.  And here I’d been avoiding socializing on the internet, disabling Facebook and not blogging or commenting on blogs.  So I stormed the Intarwebs today and pulled up Skepchick.

I’ll not tell you exactly what I decided, because the Intarwebs and science told me not to.  The main idea is probably a bit obvious.  But I feel like I’ve made a small breakthrough, and that feels good.

Another thing that feels good is cooking and kitchening.  I have already started homemade ginger ale and orange soda today.  And now I am off to the backyard to grill some fish and boil some quinoa.  (About the B-12: I had a burger today and ordered some sublingual supplements.)

About the jaundice… Ugh!


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