August 3rd, 2011
I was going to do the posts close together, but things keep getting busy. So, here’s the second post on The Ethical Slut, part II. This one focuses on Jealousy and Fear.
“No one can own another person.” (117) An important thing to remember, whether or not you are poly. You do not own your partner. (We aren’t talking about Master/slave ownership agreements here, that’s another discussion.) You are not responsible for their actions, and your every moment is not about each other. It would be a rather boring life for most of us to spend every waking moment with only one other person. There are jobs, and friends, and family and hobbies and a myriad of other things that are part of life. You share your life, poly or not, with many people, things and activities.
“Jealousy may be an expression of insecurity, of fear of rejection, fear of abandonment, feeling left out, feeling not good enough, or feeling inadequate.” (134) “[Jealousy] is a part of you, a way that you express fear and hurt.” (137) Jealousy is a normal human emotion. Everyone has jealousy at some point in their lives over something. It’s natural. And it can tell you when something is important to you. If it wasn’t important, you wouldn’t react to it.
“We imagine we know his thoughts, when in fact we are thinking about our fears.” (121) Our imaginations are great creators of fear. Sometimes, our imagination just leads us to silence or inaction. I can’t be that, he’ll say this. I can’t do that, she’ll think this. I can’t ask that, he’ll say no. How do we know? We don’t, we’re just projecting our fears onto our partner.
“You actually don’t know what your partner is doing. The images you see in your mind are the perfect reflection of your own fears.” (149) Our imagination gives us false impressions of what our partner is doing with others, or while out of our sight. We are afraid of what they are doing, afraid we’ll be hurt by it. “It helps to ask, “What am I afraid might happen?”” (131) We might imagine that the other person is better at it than we are. That they’ll enjoy it more with that other person. That we will pale in comparison. We might be afraid that he won’t want us anymore, or won’t want to do a certain thing with us anymore. We can really let our imaginations run away with us. That’s why communication is so important, before and after. So that we can stay in touch with the reality of a situation.
“What are the specific images that disturb me the most?” (148) It is important to figure out what triggers your fears, insecurities and jealousy the most. To identify major issues, so they can be named(often this, is enough to take the power away), discussed and perhaps disarmed. Or, if not disarmed, perhaps agreements can be made around them, to the benefit of all involved. No one wants to make their partners unhappy.
“Jealous might actually be envy.” (134) “When I’m not taking care of getting what I want, it’s easy to get jealous and think that someone else is getting what I am not.” (137) Are there things that you want that others appear to be getting? Are you asking for those things? Can you work out a way to have the experience you are missing so that you aren’t envious of the other person? It is important to take care of yourself, and your wants and needs. Don’t give jealousy any more footholds than it already has.
“Sometimes jealousy has at its root feelings of grief or loss.” (134) This goes back to economics of starvation, for me. Feeling like I’m losing something if someone else gets the same. Jealousy over fear of loss. I have to remind myself that someone else getting something does not take away from what I already have. And, it can even strengthen it.
“If you try to pretend that you are not jealous when you are, others will perceive you as dishonest, or worse yet, they may believe you, and see no need to support and protect you.” (138) “Denying your jealousy can lead you to act out harsh feelings in ways you will regret later.” (138) Expressing jealousy can be painful, but denying it can be damaging. It isn’t easy to admit you are feeling negatively about your partner, but letting negativity fester only makes things worse. If you can admit to it, you can then talk about it, and get through it. Together. A shared burden is easier to carry.
“The way to unlearn jealousy is to be willing to experience it.” (139) “You can feel jealousy without acting on it.” (140) Like any other emotion, jealousy does not have to take over. You can feel it and see it and deal with it, without letting it control you. This can take practice though, and time. And you have to want to. You are in control of you, even when you feel out of control. Ask for help when you need it, and jealousy is nothing to be afraid of.
“You and your partners need to practice talking about jealousy.” (151) I’m not sure how to practice, but talking about jealousy is the best way I know to get through it. Getting your feelings out, having them acknowledged and supported, if not agreed with, and then having help getting through them, is a great feeling. But that’s the next blog post, Emotions and Validation.
April 15th, 2010
I often think of this question in terms of the physical. What can he DO to turn me on? This is often the easy answer, the safe answer. It involves the surface of my being. Often it involves involuntary physical reactions. Kissing, licking, sucking, touching, groping – these things are meant to turn us on. Spanking, pinching, biting, paddling, caning, whipping, squeezing, grabbing, holding, restraining – these things turn on a masochist, it is no secret.
But what about mentally,what about my fantasies, what do I think about to get turned on? This is more risky territory. These are things that aren’t straight forward, are more vulnerable and personal. Not that I think my fantasies are unique to me, if you can imagine it, you can find it on the internet, after all. But to offer my thoughts and my mind has always been riskier than offering my body. The hurt when my thoughts are rejected is far higher than when my physical desires are rejected.
So, what are my fantasies? What are my daydreams? What do I think about to get turned on?
School girl. Kidnap victim. Slave girl. Are my top three.
1)School girl. Typical short skirt, white panties, button up top. It always involves getting in trouble and being made to bend over a desk for a spanking or paddling. It then generally devolves into sex on the desk. Sometimes it begins by being caught having sex on school grounds. Sometimes it involves bad grades or incomplete assignments, and trying to trade favors for good grades.
2)Kidnap victim. Blindfold, duct tape, handcuffs, rope, being driven off in the back of a van. Stripped naked, threat of violence for noncompliance. Photos or video taken as blackmail. Forced to pose or perform sexual acts seemingly willingly for the camera.
3)Slave girl. Collar, shackles, little else. Taught to please and serve. Often involves being raised specifically for this purpose and and may start with meeting the one I was raised to serve, or being shown and tested to find a buyer. Occasionally, involves being taken prisoner and forced into slavery for a more rebellious and discipline oriented fantasy.
So, what turns you on?
April 8th, 2010
Sex was never discussed in my house growing up. Mom never had “the talk” with me, I had it at school from a silly video. It was mentioned by her twice in my life. Once, when a friend of hers had been embarrassed when her 8 year old daughter told her not to have sex if she didn’t want more kids and described the act very poorly because I had misinformed her, being only 9 and just previous to the talk at school when she had asked Me about it. So Mom asked if I knew how it really worked now, and I said yes and that was that. The second time was when we were out buying flowers for my wedding and she wanted to know if I had any questions and to tell me the first time might not be great. I rolled my eyes and said Mom… in that tone most of us perfect as teenagers. My Dad never discussed sex when I was growing up, though as he’s gotten older he’s discussed a lack of sex due to the ineffectualness of Viagra… thanks, Dad.
I only dated one boy for one weekend in High School, and that was only a couple phone conversations, so I’d never even been kissed before I got to college. My first three boyfriends freshman year took me from kissing through oral sex at a not-too-fast pace. It was not until the summer after my sophomore year that I had sex for the first time. Subsequent first visit to OB/GYN for birth control was a godsend as far as period control. I am now nearing 30 and have had a total of 8 sexual partners, 9 if you count 3 seconds of penetration as a sexual partner, I generally don’t. Only 4 of which were/are continuous sexual relationships. I had a few STD tests a couple years ago at the request of a life insurance company and in the past couple weeks, my new doc ran a full panel for me, results still pending, but I’m not expecting any surprises. (That’s why they’re called surprises, eh?)
So that background is all well and good, but what am I really on about? One of my hard limits is sex in public. Public generally being defined as more than two other people(other than the one I’m having sex with) being present. I blush when talking about sex, avoid using sexual terms in public and even in private sometimes. I’ll swear like a sailor, but ask me to say cock or admit I’m thinking about oral and I’m suddenly shy and flustered. Sex, to me, is a private thing, but even more than that, it’s something I find it difficult to be forward about.
One, on the private matter of sex. It is a personal thing, a private thing. Sex, to me, is an expression of intimacy shared between two people, maybe three. It’s a special kind of energy and I don’t fancy the intrusion of other energy into the mix. The excitement of having sex somewhere inappropriate and public has its allure, but the thought of other people watching and the threat of being arrested most often kills it for me. That’s not to say I haven’t had sex in a public park at night, but only when those two factors have been reduced to almost nil.
He asked me to go without panties recently and it was a huge deal. Let my most private and intimate bits be exposed under my skirt? Proper girls just don’t do that(when the hell did I become proper again?). What if someone sees? What if someone grabs me randomly? What if I get pulled over? It took some very serious conversation for me to get past the fear and realize that I was in control of myself, my safety and my personal space. Not to mention, my friends would be around me to protect me should anything go wrong. It was a very freeing experience, and the edge of fear kept under control was wonderful.
Two, on not being sexually forward. Communication is key. I’ve learned, though my journey in kink, that I have to ask for what I want, be clear about what I want and to accept what I want without being ashamed or embarrassed by it. Why hasn’t this transferred to sex as well? I looked back at my posts, even my erotica, I only mention fucking once at the very end. I don’t write overt sex scenes very often and it is even rarer that I share those that I do. I could blame my parents, I could blame my sheltered early life, I could blame being an introvert and generally shy, I could blame a Puritan society. Excuses, excuses, excuses. These are excuses I have let run my sex life.
How do I stop that? How do I let go of fear and embarrassment? Why am I afraid? What am I afraid of? Rejection? Do I think that if I suggest sex or oral or say I’m thinking about your cock, he’s going to say “No, how could you? What kind of girl are you?” How ridiculous is that? Seriously, I can asked to be beat, set on fire, tied up and swung from the rafters, and yet sex, that pretty much everyone on the planet has, trips me up. How silly and neurotic is that? Talking about sex is my Boggart in the closet (yes, a Harry Potter reference). Laugh at the fear to make it go away.