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As for me, I Burn All of the Purple Incense; Moving on after a Bipolar Hyper Sexual Manic Phase

29 Jun

One of the best things about being diagnosed with bipolar disorder relatively late in life is that I’ve had a chance to ruin as many lives as possible with my un-medicated craziness. That’s a joke, I am, however, writing this after a hyper-sexual episode. If that term freaks you out, get over it, it’s a real thing and this post explains it better than I could. Sadly, hyper sexual behavior is one of my symptoms. I’ve also done the spend copious amounts of money thing. I have heard that some people experience high levels of energy and will, for instance, clean their house all night long. Not once have I had that desire, though I’ve stayed up writing or engaging in unhealthy activities.

http://www.everydayhealth.com/bipolar-disorder/bipolar-disorder-and-sex.aspx

I won’t go into details but, I am fortunate yet again to not be dead at this point. I’m learning about my triggers and how to identify when I’m slipping into risky behavior, part of my recovery plan involves telling those closest to me that when I  giddily talk to them about some stupid guy (whether I’ve known him for half my life or not), if I start to romanticize him, ask me “could you be having a manic episode right now?” I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ve asked one of my closest friends, and two exes (who are now my friends) to do this the next time I get starry-eyed and stupid over some a-hole who is unhappily married or just unhappy and is possibly struggling with his own bullshit.As embarrassing as that is,  I’ve learned 10 minutes of feeling good is not worth days and days of me hating myself for poorly controlling my impulses during a manic phase.

Here’s the thing, I know right now, I can’t have a romantic relationship of any substance because I’m not emotionally healthy enough. I have liked a couple of people enough to effectively push them far far away from me because I liked them too much to subject them to the horrors of a relationship with me. Right now I couldn’t guarantee fidelity, emotional or physical. I also know, that’s not the end of the world. I’ve been holding on to purple lavender incense to burn the next new moon (because I’m a straight up witch at this point…not really)to bring love into my life…but never mind…I burned it last night (and unlike in the sage burning incident, I did NOT light myself on fire at any point.) I’m surrounded by love all of the time.

Five factors  got me through last night when I was at the height of feeling worthless, my boys (and not wanting to miss out on the fantastic people they are now and are becoming), honestly not falling into the pits of despair and thinking they would be better off without me is a HUGE improvement, my sister who broke things down for me and made me realize this thing,while most definitely qualified as self-destructive behavior did not make me a BAD person, my lifelong friend Dawn whom I haven’t seen in ages and the fifth factor is the movie Jaws that my friend Dawn and I are going to see Friday. I have more than a small obsession with sharks in general, I wrote a post about my thing for sharks. Yes, I Do Have a Shark Tattoo on my Butt. That’s a lot of love for one person, and that’s just the 5 I thought of first. bipolar

I know sometimes this blog seems like if you read it backwards it’s the story of a relatively happy, flawesome woman who slowly descends into madness. I don’t mean for it to sound dramatic, I just feel like sharing and in my case over sharing all of the pitfalls of mental illness is the only way to bring it out of the dark. This is the story of a woman learning how to navigate the sometimes choppy waters of life and adjusting her sails accordingly (and the story of a woman with a true love for sappy metaphors.)

Male Victims of Sexual Abuse are not “LUCKY”

9 Apr

boys

 

I’ve never been a huge fan of the saying “boys will be boys”.  I think that saying dismisses actions and behavior from boys that might not necessarily need to be dismissed. I can’t help but think of the Steubenville rape case, and how the actions of the boys, the rapists, were largely dismissed because they were athletes, or because the girl was “asking for it” because she was intoxicated, or for whatever reason. This reeks of this “boys will be boys” mentality, and in my opinion, it fuels rape culture.

I also think saying “boys will be boys” gives the impression that girls are to be held to a different standard of behavior than boys.  I was a rambunctious and rowdy kid. I built forts, played with Star Wars toys, and climbed a hell of a lot of trees. My parents were extremely good about nurturing the child I was, rather than trying to make me fit and stay into one box labeled “girl”.  I think the saying is just another double standard, and I really dislike double standards. A lot.

I have written about the double standard of women being slut-shamed and how it’s very easy to fall into the seemingly socially acceptable habit of  labeling a woman a “slut” or somehow otherwise devaluing her when she chooses to have sex with a lot of people, or before knowing someone for some unknown amount of time before she has sex with them, or for whatever reason someone wants to honestly. “Slut” seems to be the go to insult for many people, like the absolute worst thing a woman can be is one who has indiscriminate sex, or close to absolute worst thing. It seems the absolute worst would be calling a woman a “fat slut”, but that is well-covered territory in this blog.

Double standards are not only annoying, they are also dangerous.  We socialize our little boys to believe that they are practically machines when it comes to sex. They want it all the time, with anyone, and they are not allowed to NOT want it. We socialize our little girls to believe that their sexuality is something to be treasured and prized and must be given with extreme caution and discretion.

I find this difference in how we socialize our children disturbing, perhaps because I am the mother of two boys. I want them to know that they too are allowed to say no and that they can be raped and violated, even though they are boys (this last part seems like it shouldn’t be necessary, but there are some people who think boys cannot be raped). I think telling them otherwise perpetuates the myth that simply because they have a penis they must want sex all the time, and they have a right to expect it, and they are not allowed to say no, and they are certainly not allowed to tell someone that they were violated or coerced into having sex when they didn’t want to.

Bill Maher, comedian and host of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher,  seems to feel the need to mock the research written about in this Time article that states that “nearly half of young men say they’ve had unwanted sex.”  This mock public service announcement  perpetuates the stereotype that men, and boys, simply because they are men and boys, have no right to say no to sexual advances, that there is no such thing as coercing a man into having sex, and if a man or boy tries to rebuke unwanted sexual advances, the video has this piece of advice for them “boo fucking hoo, you fucking pussies. Grow a pair”.

Hey, I get satire. I have written satire. I understand the set up and delivery. I understand the furor over the whole #CancelColbert  thing (admittedly the piece this links to is about hashtag activism in general, but I found it fascinating AND relevant, so I linked it) because the tweet in question was largely taken out of context because the person who wrote the tweet wrote it as if everybody in the world, or at least everyone with a twitter account, had seen the bit that aired on the show that the tweet referenced. Taken out of context, the tweet DOES sound totally offensive.

The thing is, and I may be wrong, but I don’t think there is any other set up to this video, besides Maher acting like this is a real PSA when introducing the clip. This piece doesn’t feel like it’s mocking what I think should be mocked, the belief that this is how society treats boys who have been in this situation.  It seems like it is mocking the research itself, and the very idea that a person of the male persuasion would ever have the audacity to turn down sex or admit to those times when they felt like they were coerced into having sex.

noun: satire
  1. the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.

I understand that males and females are different, but socializing our little boys to think that they must be ready and willing for sex at any time with practically anyone is harmful.  I think we would all agree that pedophilia is a disgusting thing, yet this story about Chris Brown “losing his virginity” when he was 8 years old to a girl who was 14 or 15 is insane and one that has not gotten a lot of attention for WHATEVER reason.  Does the public not care because Chris Brown is not a very likeable celebrity or is it because this scenario is just not as interesting as it would be if it was 8-year old Christina Brown and the 14 or 15-year-old was a boy? As it stands, I have a little more empathy with Chris Brown’s issues as an adult knowing that he was molested as a child, and yes, molested, not lost his virginity, but molested. Granted,  molested by another child, but I can almost guarantee that neither Chris Brown nor the young woman who molested him received any therapy or intervention of any kind. We know how Chris Brown turned out. Again, not an excuse, but perhaps insight.

I think boys need to be told about their bodies and explained that their penis becoming erect is a physiologic reaction and can happen even in traumatic or painful situations. I think, just like girls, they need to be told about sex and the consequences involved, including STD’s and pregnancy, and how females may carry the baby but that does not absolve them from any responsibility, and I also think we need to tell boys about consensual sex, consensual on both sides, and that they are allowed to say no if they want to and we need to stop perpetuating the ridiculous crap in the above video. We need to provide a culture for all children that makes them feel safe and empowered and as of right now, we are not doing that.

I’m taking this right from the website, 1 in 6, which references that 1 in 6 men have experienced unwanted or abusive sexual relations before the age of 18.  For more details, visit the site.

Before addressing the myths, let’s review some key facts:

  1. Boys and men can be sexually used or abused, and it has nothing to do with how masculine they are.
  2. If a boy liked the attention he was getting, or got sexually aroused during abuse, or even sometimes wanted the attention or sexual contact, this does not mean he wanted or liked being manipulated or abused, or that any part of what happened, in any way, was his responsibility or fault.
  3. Sexual abuse harms boys and girls in ways that are similar and different, but equally harmful.
  4. The sexual abuse of boys has nothing to do with an abuser’s sexual orientation.
  5. A boy abused by a male is not necessarily gay, nor was he abused because he’s gay, nor can the abuse make him gay.
  6. Girls and women can sexually abuse boys. The boys are not “lucky,” but exploited and harmed.
  7. Most boys who are sexually abused will not go on to sexually abuse others.

I spent some time researching Bill Maher, specifically this Wikiquote page. I’m perfectly okay with him having his opinions, I just totally disagree with some of them, and while Bill Maher has no children, I will do my best to teach my boys that they are valuable on many levels and they can be in charge of their sexuality AND be REAL MEN.

 

Oh No…She’s Talking About Sex Again

24 Feb

let's talk about sex

I grew up hearing the same bullshit stuff that presumably many girls grew up hearing about sex. Things like “sex is a girls most precious commodity”,  “don’t give it up to someone easily”, and my personal favorite, “why buy the cow when he can get the milk for free?”  What does this last one even mean? Am I the cow in this scenario? Are we telling our girls that in order to snag the man of their dreams that they need to play games to finagle an engagement ring out of him? What if a girl WANTS to be the cow that enjoys giving away her milk, is that cow doomed to walk the earth,  sadly mooing alone, forever?  This could go on for days, and while I enjoy a good metaphor as much as the next person, let’s mosey on from this one.

This “fun” and “informative” little video called The Economics of Sex that was made by The Austin Institute pretty perfectly sums up the claptrap that I was taught as a child. Go on, watch it, it’s short. I’ll wait.

SO MUCH WRONG, am I right? I imagine I believed all of that at the time. I might not have really understood it, but I believed it.  However, I had a lot of guy friends who were not being told the same thing. In fact, it seemed they were being told almost the exact opposite.

I attended a very small private Christian school for two years in 7th and 8th grades where I learned that YES, having sex is bad if you’re a girl, and so is listening to Van Halen, whether you are a girl or a boy, and the fact that I didn’t REALLY believe in all of what I was hearing didn’t really stop me from carrying that information with me when I went off to high school (except for the Van Halen part because those guys rock).

My guy friends who were having sex in high school were being high-fived while the girls with whom they were sexing (yeah, I know that’s probably not exactly the correct way to phrase that but let’s go with it) were called names like “slut” and were widely regarded as being somehow less…everything…than the girls like me who weren’t having sex in high school.

Before that comes off sounding like I am high atop Mt. Betterthanyou, I was a virgin until after high school mainly because I just didn’t date in high school. At all really. I just wasn’t asked. At all really. The first person I went on a date with after I graduated is the guy with whom I lost my virginity. I was 18 and felt like BEFORE having sex for the first time that surely I was missing out on something incredibly amazing. AFTER I had sex for the first time, I thought…something different. Let’s just say sex didn’t get good for me until many years after that.

As I grew into a young woman, my feelings about sex remained complicated. I tried to stick to what I had heard was the “right” way to nab a man, and that meant the three date rule. Don’t give it up until at least three dates in. This will show the guy that you’re a highly valued commodity, and not some piece of trash that has a lot of sex because it is…gasp…enjoyable.  If you want to get into these culottes, you sir will need to take me out on three actual dates and yes, McDonald’s all three times does count. Maybe I needed to work on the “highly valued” part, or maybe I just loved the McRib sandwich, in either case I understood that having sex right away, even if I wanted to, was just BAD, and would make ME BAD.

After my first relationship with a guy that I dated for 3 years, off and on, then my next relationship with a guy that I dated for 3 years, off and on, what counted as three ACTUAL dates with the couple of men I dated casually changed quiet a bit, and sometimes, they weren’t dates at all.

I wasn’t sure how to rectify my feelings that I was actually starting to enjoy sex and yet I still wanted to be considered a “nice” girl.  How could that BE? This was an absolute impossibility, right? Once I started enjoying sex didn’t that mean that I was one step away from just being a filthy porn star? It was a slippery K-Y lube-covered slope as far as I was concerned.

As I had more relationships and life experiences and matured (SHUT UP) I feel like my views on sex have become clearer. Not clear as in things are either black or they are white (I am so not going to make a 50 Shades of Grey joke here but god help me, I want to) but clear in realizing that there IS a whole lot of grey. My views are mine, and while they might be controversial,  I no longer buy into the whole “sex is a commodity” thing. I don’t think it’s right or even fair (yes yes, a word I TRY not to use because it’s pointless) that there is such a double standard regarding sex.  Regardless of my feelings about marriage in general, I think any man who doesn’t want to marry someone because she is  having regular sex with him is an idiot. I also think that any woman who feels the need to wrangle some poor not clearly thinking because his mind is clouded by all the sex you’re refusing to have with him man is also an idiot (please pick up on the sarcasm in this sentence). But, I’m not judgmental, I hope these two idiots live happily ever after (maybe not so much sarcasm in this one).

I do sometimes stumble upon something that gives me pause as far as how I actually feel about sex and what being sexually liberated means and this is one of those times.  I read about this and went through a plethora of emotions in a short period of time.  For your reading pleasure, here is a brief re-creation of my emotional state after reading about this comedian/writer having a romp with James Deen on film.

9:02 pm – WHAT? This woman,  (and I cannot find her name for the life of me and I have read the piece 3 times) who is a comedian/writer responded to a Tweet to be in a scene with James Deen? That’s kind of weird and gross.
9:03 pm – Well, I can see how it would be an empowering thing to do. She’s an adult. He’s an adult. It’s her body.
9:04 pm -Google JAMES DEEN just to jog my memory as far as what he looks like
9:10 pm – I wonder if he is going to Tweet this offer again?
9:11 pm – Follow James Deen on Twitter

James-Deen

In just a few minutes, more than I should have taken because I got sucked into the Googling portion, I came to the conclusion that it was her choice, and as a feminist, a choice I respect, and while it would not necessarily be something I would do, on film anyway (okay, in a film that would be seen by a lot of people) her choice doesn’t make her a BAD person, it doesn’t make her anything other than what I know about her, a woman who chose to have sex on film with a guy who makes his living by doing just that. I don’t know anything else about this woman, but I would not jump from woman I know nothing about to woman who has sex on film so she is obviously a terrible person. Not a leap I would make because it makes no sense to me.

At this point, at 44 years of age, I feel like the crux of true feminism is that women are free to pursue their happiness however they would like. If that means they choose to not work outside the home, then they should do that, if that means they work construction, they should do that.  It also means that if they choose to have a lot of sex because they want to then they should do that.

Every choice has its consequences, however. If you read the piece above, she mentions that people were hurt by her choice. I surmised that she has a significant other who was none too pleased with her decision, though she does not go into detail. That is unfortunate.  Also, if you read the comments connected to the piece, and really, I highly recommend you don’t ever read comments of anything posted on the internet, but I felt it was necessary in this case,  if you even take 20% of what is said as not trolling and as the real thoughts of those commenting, this woman is now thought by many to be “diseased gutter trash”, “a disgusting whore bag”, and my favorite a “morally bankrupt sex object”, yet not ONE person commenting says ANYTHING about the fact that James Deen is ACTUALLY A PORN STAR, which means nothing to ME, but why does she get lambasted while he is absolutely left alone?  I guess with a great penis comes great respect. Yeah, I don’t know, it just SUCKS that this is the double standard in which we reside.

I think the person going by the name Truth, who left this comment, can close out my feelings on this whole thing –

So you don’t like girls who do things like this? Big deal. Hang around with girls who don’t. But don’t pretend that everyone should be or think like you.

Boom.

Also, I will add on to what Truth said and say if you don’t want to BE a girl who does something like this, then don’t. The world is your oyster, do with your clam what you wish.

I Smell Sex and Dinosaurs

2 Oct

dino

Let me begin by stating that I am far from judgmental. I’m pretty open-minded sexzzzually (I can hear my Mom sighing all the way from here.  Hang in there, Mom, it’s not that bad). My belief is that if all parties involved are willing adults then have at it. I find the United States attitudes on sex to be very puritanical. I think we have it backwards and should be MORE sensitized to violence and LESS to nudity and sex. You can show somebody’s head being shot clean off their body in a movie and nobody blinks but show that body naked, with a penis, then OH MY GOD CLOSE YOUR EYES. I do realize sex and nudity are different things. I’m just saying in general; more sex, less violence.

And again, sex involving willing adults.

I realize willing adults are into all KINDS of things and it’s all groovy with me, man. Whatever.  I thought I was at least familiar with a lot of the kinks that exist. I’m a grown woman for heaven’s sake. I know about BDSM (and NO I am not referring to that Grey book. I refuse to read that because

1) everybody else loved it and I am a pill when it comes to things that become very popular and

2) I read excerpts and I was not impressed on the basis of literary merit alone

Mostly 1 though.

I know about people dressing up like animals and role play.  I saw the CSI episode about Plushies and Furries  and was absolutely FASCINATED by it. If you’re not familiar with the terms let me link to a random person on Yahoo Voices who felt it necessary to write something explaining the difference in the terms. Neal Litherland, I greatly appreciate you taking the time to try to educate all of us. I still don’t know what term I would use if I encountered a Plushy and/or Furry in real life because honestly I’ve read this yahoo voices piece a few times and I am finding it difficult to tell the difference.  The take away from this piece is mainly this

Though sometimes innocent playacting or costuming, there is a segment of the furry fan population which is sexually stimulated by furries (which explains the whopping amount of art and erotic games that feature furries on the Internet) and by emulating furries. Furry parties, for instance, are a nice way of phrasing that there may be a sexual get together for those who are furry fans and enthusiasts.

Some people like to put on animal costumes and get it on. It just sounds hot to me. HEAT hot, that is, but whatever, willing adults. Do your thang.

If I came across a person dressed in any kind of animal-like outfit I would probably simply walk the other way. Not because I harbor judgement towards them, simply because I would probably be a bit freaked out. I’m not nearly as bad ass as I might come across. I’m scared of clowns too, which is not true for everyone. Some people are actually sexually attracted to clowns. I cannot find the term “coulrophilia” in the REAL dictionary, but you better believe it is in Urban Dictionary. There was a CSI episode about that too. I tried to locate a clip on YouTube of the episode but I couldn’t find one. Don’t go looking for it yourself. Trust me. You don’t want to venture down that rabbit hole.

Most of my sexual knowledge came from CSI apparently. The rest is made up of my Mom having “the TALK” with me with the help of some GIANT old encyclopedias, watching scrambled Cinemax on Friday nights (or SKINEMAX as it was known around the school yard…wink wink), and the rest I just pieced together myself thanks to episodes of The Love Boat and movies like Sixteen Candles and Halloween. That last one mainly taught me that sex is bad, mmmkay. That old “the only one who survives until the end is the virgin” thing, but that is for another post.  I think I did a pretty good job of figuring out what’s what and I have a healthy respect for other people and what turns their crank.  I thought I knew a lot.

Until now. I stumbled onto something that I really did not even know existed. I found

DINOSAUR EROTICA.

That is, literature that features dinosaurs, REAL DINOSAURS, not people in a dinosaur costume, having sex with, according to the cover art at least, comely white women who, in one case apparently, are former Solid Gold Dancers.  I was okay with this dinosaur erotica thing, but gold bikini top, really?

dinosaursex

I wanted to include an excerpt from one of the books but after an absolutely exhaustive search, I could not find one that explained exactly how the dinosaur/human sex takes place. I cannot even IMAGINE the logistics of such a thing, BUT, Christie Sims can, and she was good enough to write it out for us, not once, not twice, but SEVERAL times, featuring many different species of dinosaur.

If you know anything about Amazon, or the internet, or smart-asses in general, you KNOW the reviews for these books are breathtaking. Here is just one

5.0 out of 5 stars The apotheosis of literature October 2, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
If you have been searching for dinosaur-on-woman porn (and who hasn’t been?), your search has at last reached its end. Filling a literary niche that, incredibly, has been ignored until now, the author has recognized the public’s insatiable interest in dinosaur lust for the ladies. Human ladies. I look forward to the sequels that will undoubtedly chronicle their ongoing romance, their subsequent affairs and rocky issues in their relationship, and the fates of their dino-human children.

Ms. Sims, I hope you sell a lot of books. I salute you. The rest of you, do yourselves a favor and read the reviews and if you think you can stomach it, read one of the books and let me know one thing; HOW? Just…how.

yeah

Willing adults, keep on shaggin’.

Now excuse me, I need to erase my internet browser history.

J. A. Allen

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