Emotional Train Wreck

First off, I’ve learned that I’m really terrible at resisting temptation when I’m on vacation. I can generally make better choices than I would’ve before, but it’s hard, especially when relying on other people’s kitchens and cooking. When I’m home, I control when I eat out, where I eat out, and the caloric content of my snacks and breakfast. At other places, egg whites and the like are not in abundance, and so I start my day immediately 300 calories above where I want to be. More than that, I still am a bit of a food tourist, and I like seeing the unique sweets or restaurants a place has to offer. When there’s no gym available, and honestly, when no one else is working out or prioritizing fitness, it’s difficult to get that in too. I went to Boston a few weeks ago and to Philly/NYC this weekend, and both times I ended up completely off-base in my fitness and food choices. It sucks, because I do so well at home, but then I see little to no progress because of those weekends.

Anyway, aside from that, I’m an emotional mess. I’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster for a few weeks now. I feel tired and about to cry a lot of the time. Work has been busy, which is good, but my current supervisor is completely incompetent and that wears on me. My dude and I had a slip up, of sorts, because of him being really stupid about something. Given that, it’s been really hard to trust him and to relax about our relationship. Doubt festers and breeds jealousy, which are negative emotions that I don’t like experiencing. They change how you view people and experiences, and that’s not good. We’re working on it, but it’s challenging.

More than anything, though, is the persistent missing of my mom. As time goes by, the reality of it sets in more and more. It’s so hard. My dad is actively dating this other woman, which sucks, and yet he also is really lonely and sad when he’s not with her, which sucks too. My sister isn’t doing all that great – her job was seasonal and is over, and she has too much time on her hands, and it’s easy to see the toll that’s taking. On my end, I just feel alone. I know I’m not; I have family, friends. The world, and their worlds, don’t and shouldn’t revolve around me at all.

That said, it’s difficult. People are very self-involved, and the ones who do reach out have such negative things going on in their own lives (or their outlook is just that way) that it doesn’t aid the situation. More often than not, though, people are just really busy, too busy even to reach out to call or check in. People don’t use the phone at all, which never used to bother me, but now does. People don’t ask about my mom or how any of that’s going, as if it just didn’t happen. Maybe they just don’t know what to say, but it feels like they don’t care. People that don’t live nearby put the onus all one me – if I want to talk, I can call, and they’ll try to answer, but that’s the most anyone has offered and it seems pretty fake, honestly. I just wish people would voluntarily reach out on their own – it’d make me feel a lot more cared for.

Really, it just makes me want to hole up and never reach out to anyone. It puts me in the “would they notice if I X” mindset. Really, there’s nothing less comforting than having people consistently check their calendars for weeks out and still not having time for our friendship. I hate it even more because people keep throwing it back to me like “this used to be you” in terms of my schedule. And yes, for a few years, my schedule was constantly booked. The difference, though, is I always found time for people. If someone wanted to hang out, I made sure to find a time within a week or, at most, two, to dedicate time to that person (which was WHY my schedule stayed so booked). I also sent emails and articles and such to people in the interim to foster the relationship. These people, it’s not like that.  It’s harder because I’m in a place right now where I need people more than ever, and yet I’m the one trying so hard to make it work, and I feel like this is a time when I shouldn’t have to try like that.

It’s all worse after this weekend and with the holidays approaching. It was extremely difficult to spend time with my dude’s family. It’s awesome seeing him in that environment, and I like meeting the people he cares about. That said, seeing his mom interacting with the family and him, and doing all the things my mom used to do…It just brings home how I’ll never have that again, and I will never again have someone to look out for me or care about me in that way. I don’t have that cheerleader, that source of love and comfort (and occasionally that pain in the ass).

When it comes to the holidays, thanksgiving will be nice. I’ll see my aunt and uncle, and my dad, and the dude is coming with. Thing is, I haven’t spend thanksgiving with my parents in years, so that’s not as painful. Christmas, however, is going to be a nightmare. Being back home in the house without her, being near my sister and her overwhelming emotion and grief, and having no one to hold together the traditions. My dad’s already discussed not even doing presents, which right there is already upsetting. I may get to see some friends from high school, but really, I won’t have anyone there for me. It’s all about me holding together the traditions and making sure everyone else holds it together, but as per usual, no one ever checks in to see how I’m doing. That’s not how my family works. I thought my dude was coming with, but his mom’s birthday is that weekend and birthdays are a huge deal in his family, and honestly, it’s ridiculously expensive to go to where I’m from. I couldn’t pay for it without my dad helping me, so I do get that. And, as always, time off is hard to get.

I struggle balancing what’s fair and reasonable to ask for as a need with what my partner may wish to do of his own initiative. On the one hand, it’d make a huge difference to me to have him there. I could really use the emotional support. On the other hand, can I ask him to spend the money and take the extra time off work, potentially stressing his time with his family? That seems unfair. Plus, the woman side of me feels like it should come from him; if he doesn’t want to be there, doesn’t feel the need to be there, then I don’t want him there…even if that makes it even harder for me.

Anyhow, emotional train wreck, basically.

And no shit, five minutes after I finished writing this (at work, since that’s where I was hit with emotion today),  my dad emails to say he booked a vacation for an 11 day European trip with his new girlfriend. The vacation is in april. Serious, much? And only 2 and half months after his wife of 33 years unexpectedly died. WTF? If I wasn’t a wreck before…

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Vulnerability

I put a decent amount of information about myself into the abyss. Some of it is easily accessible and connected to me, some is easily accessible so long as you know my pseudonym, and some is embedded.

My literotica stories and tumblr, for example, are linked to my fetlife profile. My stories and tumblr are linked from the blog. Those are easily accessible, as long as you know my fetlife handle. My blog, however, isn’t directly linked to my profiles anymore, but rather is inside an “about me” separate page on my tumblr. Sometimes, my WP stats tell me if someone was referred from there. Sometimes that doesn’t work. Sometimes people follow me and it alerts me, but rss readers don’t alert me.

My point is, I’m reasonably aware that people can access my erotica or tumblr, but have no clue when people are reading my blog. It’s a bit disconcerting, really, because sometimes I want to be very candid, but I’m worried people will read it and realize I’m talking about them (or think I am when I’m not).

Most people I know nowadays post everything via notes and journal entries on fetlife. I never like that, though, because then people’s response validates me or makes me feel rejected, and I don’t write for validation. Writing, for me, serves several purposes:

  1. It’s cathartic. I process emotions better when I write about them. I reinforce feelings of gratitude, I can logically go through problems, I can visualize my emotions and potentially apply reason to them. I’m not great at talking through emotionally heavy things with people, and I spent many years with lots of emotions pent up inside. That wasn’t healthy. Writing about these feelings, whether it be anonymously or privately, helps me release those emotions.
  2. The readers in my abyss may learn from me, and I can learn from their comments/responses.
  3. I may give someone wank fodder, which is kind of hot to think about.
  4. There’s a slim, slim chance that some Domly/Toppy dude will take an interest in me, stalk me, and get a whole bunch of insight into how my mind works, better enabling him to fuck with me and ultimately control me. Again, communicating about my feelings in terms of submission is possible for me, but I’m not great at initiating that conversation. Things on here sort of make that difficulty irrelevant.

Thing is, that last one, that’s the thing that I both want and fear. It’s a level of vulnerability to someone that I don’t normally have. Knowledge is power, and if someone stumbles onto this blog, they have a lot more knowledge about me than I do them, and that puts them in a position of power. That makes me nervous. There’s great potential for arousal and submissive feelings and all that fun stuff, but with that comes great potential for someone to hurt me. (Such is power exchange.) Up until now, the only men who have shared that they’ve read up on me are relationships that have not ended positively. It doesn’t bode well, but I still retain hope.

I really wish there was a better way to know who my readers are, so that I know when to self-censor on here and so that I could better prepare myself for interactions with different folks.

Submissive Shortcoming

I’ve wondered a lot about why my dating interactions with “Dominant” men always seem to fail. On the surface, it’s been obvious (distance, one of us is less into the other, etc). I’ve always wondered, though, if it was just that I got so nervous that I wasn’t really being myself. Maybe, had I been my normal, slightly snarky, bubbly self instead of shy, quiet, and totally acquiesing, they would’ve been more into it. A conversation with a friend tonight is leading me to believe that in fact, maybe it hasn’t worked because of who my normal self is.

It’s frustrating. I’ve always been nervous and afraid that more dominant men will rule me out as an option because I’m very type A and generally have my shit together in day-to-day life. I’m shy with new people, but otherwise, I’m outgoing and energetic. I have a lot of energy, am not afraid to ask questions, and I lack much of a filter. Dominant men frequently just have this flirtatiously commanding persona they embody around submissive females (usually the quiet, more timid types), and they almost never act like that with me. Really, the ones that do tend to be the very experienced men or women, oftentimes “old guard” folks or those over 35/40. (Random, but part of why black rose appeals to me a lot is that most of the people I’ve met in that group tend to be of that “old guard” mindset, and don’t immediately disregard my submissive potential.)

I’m not submissive with everyone, but that doesn’t make me any less submissive. I have opinions, and I’m a planner and taking charge doesn’t frighten me. I’m capable of managing, both myself and others, but that doesn’t make me any less obedient to those with authority above me. I’m not totally new and inexperienced, but there’s a lot I have to learn and I’m very willing to be taught.

I’m strong, but I’m willing, able, and in fact sometimes near desperately desire to submit to someone else’s will. People never seem to see it. My closest friends see it, but potential partners never do. I’m a people pleaser. I will go out of my way to make sure those around me succeed, are happy, and have what they need. I will use all of my passion, energy, and enthusiasm to effectively serve my partner. It just takes me a bit longer to get there.

I can’t act like that with anyone. For me, it takes a great deal of trust. We have to have fun together, get along as friends, and have physical chemistry. I have to respect you, your actions, and the decisions you make. If you start taking a stronger/more commanding tone with me, I’ll respond to it. You’ll notice my starting to look out for your desires more and more.

And really, if you take that commanding, flirtatiously dominant persona with me from the beginning and you’ve establish some quick initial respect, you’ll generally be able to see the change in my reactions to you.

I guess I just wish men would see the potential behind the day-to-day self, and would be willing to take on someone who is maybe a bit more of a challenge, or at least is more teasing in nature. I want men to take on a more commanding air in my presence.

Book Review: If Only by Cherise Sinclair

If Only by Cherise Sinclair

This is the eighth book in the Master of the Shadowlands series, and it was equally as awesome as the others. Synopsis from Amazon:

After the last fiasco, Sally gives up. She’ll never find a Dom of her own. Instead the computer whizz is job hunting in between bending the law–just a bit–to unearth the bastards who’d enslaved her friends. The clueless cops and Feds obviously need her help.  FBI special agents, Galen and Vance, have waited to play with Sally for a long time. When the mischievous submissive returns to the exclusive Shadowlands BDSM club after an ugly relationship, the experienced co-tops are more than pleased. Realizing she’s suppressing deep-seated emotions, the powerful Doms push her–only to find that her sassiness conceals a scarred and vulnerable heart.  Shaken by the unexpected emotional exposure, Sally flees the demanding Masters and the Shadowlands. And that should be the end of that, since both Galen and Vance have reasons not to seek a long-term relationship, especially with a submissive who doesn’t want what they can give. But when a brutal attack by her ex-Dom sends Sally into their home, the two agents are driven to protect her. To help her. To take her under command. Falling in love isn’t in the plans. But the little imp brings light into their lives, and just as they begin to want more, they discover she’s hacked into an organization that delights in burning people alive. Now more than hearts are on the line, and Sally’s submission could save her life.

I really enjoyed this book. Mystery, romance, BDSM – what’s missing? I related to the main character a good deal as well. For years, she’s played in the scene but no one ever realized she never let people see her emotions. These two Doms step up and force her to face her emotions, wants, and needs, and to vocalize them. I am much better than I used to be about that, but I still have a great deal of difficulty vocalizing my emotions or desires. Similar to the main character, I was raised in situations that trained me to never show weakness. If I expressed my pain, fear, etc., I was made to regret it pretty quickly. As such, trusting others to hear the truth and not punish me (even in a passive agressive way) is really difficult. More than that, it’s my nature now to not share, and it isn’t my consciously choosing not to, I just honestly forget to because I don’t feel like people care enough to know.

Realistically, I’ve rarely had a partner notice or seem to care that I wasn’t sharing deeper emotions, so that has kind of validated my insecure thoughts about people not caring. Someday, though, I want to be find someone who wants to be in my head. He’ll force me to vocalize and share with him, because without doing so he can’t understand me enough to know how far to push. He’ll notice if I don’t volunteer emotional responses.

Again, I’m not as bad as the character in this book, and I’m better than I used to be. I do have some people I talk to now, whereas I used to not open up to anyone. I like to think I’m looking out for my own needs enough now to discuss them. It’d be nice, though, for a Dom to call me on my tendency to hide deep thoughts.

Aside from that, I loved this quote – she’s in my head!

Favorite Quote:

“Don’t you hate that? When you give them the right to command, and they don’t?” Sally shook her head. “Would you believe one man put nipple clamps on me… and the second I squawked, he took them right off. No Dom cookies for that wussy.” But her Feds… her majorly dominating Feds would earn an entire box of chocolate chip cookies. “Oh man, I think I did a scene with that wimp. Totally forgettable.” Maxie slouched back on the leather couch. “Last month, Master Sam put clamps on me. When I whimpered, his eyes lit up, and he tightened them until I was up on tiptoes.” She gave a happy sigh. “There’s no one like a Master.”

This is why I hate when Tops ask me if I like it. I want someone to react to my fear and pain by tightening/hurting me more, and I want his eyes to light up from the desire he feels at inflicting such pain on me.

Book Review: This is Who I Am (Master of Shadowlands)

This is Who I Am (Masters of the Shadowlands 7) by Cherise Sinclair

This is the seventh of the Master of Shadowlands series, all of which have overlapping characters. Cherise Sinclair is one of my favorite erotica authors, and this is another win for her. I love Sinclair’s writing because of it’s authenticity in terms of relationship dynamics and BDSM. Furthermore, she caveats her books by telling readers to remember that in real life, men can’t read your mind – I appreciate that honesty, and it comes through in the books themselves as well. Character development is key for me, and the characters in this series all make me feel. I cry when they cry, I get turned on when they’re turned on.

This particular book is about an older woman who was kidnapped as part of a human trafficking ring and then rescued. The hero helped free her, but in doing so forced her to feel in front of slavers she’d spent months freezing out. The hero is a sadist, and the protagonist a masochist. Against her own interests, the protagonist repeatedly needs and seeks out the hero/sadist as she is forced to accept her masochism.

Aside from the jerk-off material, suspense plot line (kidnappers aren’t fully arrested), and romantic story, this book rang true to me because of the protagonist’s feelings about herself. I struggle sometimes to accept my masochism (and kink in general, at times), striving instead to be “normal.” Sinclair clearly emphasizes that what is “normal” and what is “right” don’t contradict how you process emotions and what you desire sexually. Sinclair writes about the protagonist’s foggy state of mind – when things get stressful and it’s been a while since a pain session, the world isn’t in focus. Pain helps her release and focus, let go, and feel again – not just feel at all, but feel positive feelings too. — That resonated with me strongly, because pain for me is more than an endorphin rush or surrendering of control, but it helps me feel pleasure in all aspects (not just sexual ones) when before I had disassociated.

I recommend this book to anyone into kink, or anyone interested in a good portrayal of S/m.

“She wanted that ruthless part of him. With him, she wouldn’t have to beg for more, because he’d force her to where the sharp edge between pain and pleasure slipped away, and he’d keep her there, where her soul was bared to him.”

Disassociating…or re-evaluating.

Lately, I seem to have random bursts of passion about things instead of my usual zest for all things in life. I think I need some mental relaxation. A lot has been going on, basically.

First, I’m back in the States! Yay! Another bomb went off while I was there, and it was a much closer call. I was definitely happy to be going back home. As much as I consider going for a year (financially, it’s the best decision), I can’t make myself face the risks. That, and after two weeks I was twitchy from loud noises; a year would give me actual PTSD.

On the positive side, my bosses at work are recommending me for a promotion, unprompted from me. I really hope it happens. Either way, it’s nice to have my work recommended.

I’ve been oddly uninterested in kink for a while now. I think it started by dating a religious guy and making me re-evaluate casual play – combined with feeling shitty after playing with too many coupled people and casual encounters. I haven’t really done much lately. I went to the rope event in May, and played at Rapture in March…but that’s been it, really. I haven’t been to the Crucible or BR in months either. I’m still very much enjoy bondage and pain, but I only want it with someone who I’m submitting to, which is rare to find. Basically, I’m seeking a Dominant man for a relationship, surprise surprise. The other kink stuff I really only want to do with a regular romantic partner, preferably one with power over me.

It’s a weird mood to be in, really, especially prior to Fusion. I’m not very excited for this year’s Fusion. I’m not prepared – I’m not packed or shaved, I don’t have classes selected, and I don’t have playdates all set up. I’m going without a partner (with friends, yes, but “solo”). There will be 1,000 people there and limited bathrooms. I have to cook my food and I don’t know if we have the right equipment to do so. It stresses me out. I am worried I will just end up retreating somewhere and reading for several hours. I just feel lonely in my kink. I need someone looking out for me that I can play and grow with, and without that, it all feels empty. I’d love to be the type for casual encounters, but I have never mastered that, emotionally or physically.

On the other hand, I’ve had some shitty family stuff get even shittier lately (that gets a post of its own), and combined with the warzone crap, I could use some BDSM. As the title of the post indicates, the more shit that I think about, stress about, etc., the more I just disassociate altogether and start feeling like nothing matters. It makes me question what I’m doing with my life. I’ve intended to find a place to volunteer, start going to services, and work out more – but I seemingly never have time to catch up, let alone get ahead. Ugh. I could use something to make me feel, make me forget and stop thinking, and allow me to let go. I just don’t know who I can trust to take me there anymore.

Adrift

Kink isn’t just part of my sexuality. It often enhances arousal and many aspects turn me on, but it is more than that – it is how I am who I am. I have difficulty expressing myself and allowing myself to feel emotions fully – kink helps me do those things in a healthier way.

When I am bound, I have no choice but to relax. I can’t escape, I can’t move on, I can’t go somewhere else – I have to exist where I am. My mind has to accept that I am where I am, and in that I can focus and my mind can let go.

When someone hurts me, it gives me the socially acceptably opportunity to react. People think I’m easy to read, that my reactions are obvious. And, to some extent, they are – I can’t lie well, my facial reactions to things are visible. I don’t often disclose what’s below the surface. I’m scared to show my real reactions to people. I monitor and control myself all the time, just in case, to keep the peace. I want all those around me to be at optimal happiness, and I’ll do my part to get them there. It’s hard, though, always being on point. Always worrying if I’ll react inappropriately. I joke about being awkward, that’s why – I’m worried I’m reacting inappropriately. When someone hurts me, reacting is appropriate, it’s expected. It’s allowable, even appreciated. I can relax, and I can let go.

Without these things, I’m less. I’m less vibrant, and less balanced. I get more run down. I get more jaded, sad, lonely.

Sometimes I wish I had other ways of coping. Sometimes I think back to times when I did, and I wonder if I was better off. I wonder if I should be focusing on therapy, or on religion. I wonder if I should be pouring my energy into certain self improvement projects to try to get these same emotions. At the end of the day, however, this is now what I’ve become relatively reliant on for staying balanced. Unfortunately, without it, I’m at a loss. I’m adrift and I need someone to toss me a line – literally and figuratively – to rein me back in.