Sunday, January 2, 2011

Crumbs are not satisfying; mealtime is not sexytime

It just occurred to me that my fear response seems to be installed improperly. Well, maybe it was installed correctly but is malfunctioning.
In my last relationship, I remember my partner saying, "I feel so safe with you," repeatedly. I felt the same way. For absolutely no good reason. Actually, despite mounting evidence that I should probably be grabbing my shit and running for the hills (out of my own house, no less), my brain still kept saying, "You love her. Stay."  I would get blindsided by something that really hurt my feelings, time after time, have a moment of clarity that our relational patterns were twisted, and then get interrupted by my own brain. No, no. You should stay. Y'all love each other. 

 When you really love someone unselfishly, you don't to the things we did to each other. I certainly had my part in the insanity as well, but there is no denying that's exactly what it became. Insane. And I stuck around anyway. I really thought we were in love, and I wasn't ever going to find something better. I thought I didn't deserve better. I didn't know better actually existed in real life. A friend of mine remarks frequently that the crumbs she used to mistake for relationships astound her. I can really relate to that, both as someone that was once scrambling for crumbs and someone that was once dropping them at my leisure. Of course, I never realized I was doing either at the time, and looking back and seeing it for what it was makes me nauseous.

I find this type of backward fear response in other situations. I was in a room with twenty guys the other night, and I was the only woman.
Twenty gay guys. Not a single one of them was in the slightest bit dangerous, to my knowledge, and I knew several of them. Yet, I started getting a little panicky. Sweaty palms and short of breath and everything. I wanted to leave. (No, I don't have a gay man phobia, I live with one. ...Wait- did that sound like 'I am not racist, I totally have a black friend?') I talked myself down and stayed, and eventually other people I knew, some of whom were women, started showing up and I realized how weird that had just been. The strangest part is that I know from experience that if I had not been in the safe and familiar setting with the non-threatening men I was with, I most likely would not have gotten panicky like that. For example, if I had been in a club, on a dance floor, with a bunch of men around me of indeterminate sexuality that I didn't know, I would have probably been perfectly fine. I think the reason for this is that in that situation I can put up a front of indifference and create a sense of control by judging these men and whether or not I think I have some sort of power over them in the form of them being attracted to me. This isn't a matter vanity or conceit, it is actually more like the opposite. Obviously the actual threats to my safety are in scenario two, so why is the fear in scenario one? I become so afraid that if I acknowledged it as what it is, I would be possibly be overwhelmed, so I behave fearlessly and that original fear spills into weird and inappropriate situations.

I didn't realize until fairly recently that commitment and intimacy are fucking scary (to me...I'm Sure no one else can relate). I thought I was totally down with the commitment. Yeah... No. Intimacy I knew I wasn't a fan of. I don't so much have boundaries, or even walls. I have something more like this:

I think you get the idea.

More ass backwardness:

I laugh when I'm uncomfortable- Especially if someone is really angry with me, at random odd shit, and at people with incredibly dry senses of humor, and seem to not laugh at things most people find funny. I think the creator of America's Funniest Home Videos should be executed, speaking of.

Oh my God, I just got the theme song stuck in my head. Instant karma.

I could calmly eat a sandwich while watching open heart surgery or discussing vomit and excrement, but if you start licking your fingers, smacking your lips, or saying "Mmmmm!" (/making any noises that sound like you are having a sexual response to your food) I will gag. Hard.


  1. It must be genetic. As I reviewed the lovely 2010, I was brought up short remembering the good times with old whathisname.... some of the highlights were him inviting his ex-wife to my first birthday dinner with him, taking me to dinner with several women he used to love/bed?, insisting that I attend all manner of social functions with him so that he could point out the women he was interested in, had had or might have in the future if he finds himself alone and (one of my favorites) his ex-wife picking us up from various and sundry trips we took with and without his children. Ah love.... I anticipate a single, celibate and loveless 2011. The last year ended blessedly with the big popping sound of my head exiting my poophole. Woohoo! xo

  2. What is this thing that you call i.n.t.i.m.a.c.y. Is that like when you get a joint checking account.
    Jokes aside. It is good to see that you can question your protective rationalisations. Intimacy scares the shit out of me. I am afraid that if others see my vulnerabilities, my normalness or my inadequacies that they will reject me and I will have cause to reject my self. It is a fucking scary place. I cant even watch other people being intimate. The fear of rejection response that it triggers makes me nauseous.
    Sorry, no uplifting finally to this comment. Just open honesty.

  3. Wow Mary Frances, that was quite a closing visual. lmho ...(hahaha plop)

    @Craig, I also hoard money obsessively and am completely neurotic about my finances, so a joint checking account is almost more unfathomable to me at this point than emotional vulnerability...that's pretty messed up. No need to apologize, homeslice. I don't hold any expectations. :) And I certainly appreciate your ever faithful readership.