|Fear and Confusion
||[Apr. 13th, 2018|12:13 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
This past Wednesday, I told Dee that I really like them, I think they're a great person, I want to do more stuff together, but I don't want to have sex with them. It was really hard for me to do that and made me feel like a bad person. (This is not connected to my rational thoughts about the situation.) I still kind of feel like a bad person. We had a nice evening together regardless. We snuggled for a while and going to an art supply store.
In text yesterday, they asked whether this was for just right now, or for the foreseeable future. The short version of my answer (sent today because I couldn't figure out what to say before that) is that this is for the foreseeable future.
I don't know why I feel this way. I understand bits of it I guess, but not all of it together.
I talked with Danae about how I'm feeling in general. I'm so confused about where my head's at. I was so excited at first about having a play partner! I enjoyed sex with them. But then I didn't. I think part of it is me being bad at expressing what I want combined with us both being basically subs/bottoms. But there's more, and not all sex has to be about kink or power dynamics.
I know there's more because, right now, even the idea of of playing with other people, or being at play events, feels really scary. I'm on a Facebook list for a kinky social group that a friend (who I was sort-of-but-not-really dating [because, appropriately enough, I didn't know how to express what I wanted with] the summer before Syracuse) organizes. They are planning a play-party, and there is discussion happening about it.
It would be the first such event I've been to at a private home. People are talking about various toys they will be bringing. There will be needles, rope, floggers, a fuck-saw (penetrative toys mountable on a Sawzall) and maybe other stuff. I've wanted to feel welcome at an event like that for *so* long.
Instead, I feel scared. Really scared. Knot-in-my-chest, cold chills scared.
I think some of it is tied to my experience with Dee. But I don't know how. And some if it is a feeling that I wouldn't belong and be welcome, which I've felt before Dee when there was discussion about such get-togethers with this group. And there's more fear whose source I don't have a grip on. Thinking about being there makes me want to be safe at home with my safe partner and my safe kitty playing safe games. It makes me feel scared and vulnerable and endangered. (Yet not going makes me feel scared that I'll seem aloof or that I'm rejecting overtures of friendship and inclusion.)
I've been talking mostly about Dee with my therapist the last couple of visits. About how I don't want to have sex with them and how I don't understand that feeling and how terrifying it is to express that. Next week I'll go through this more general fear.
When I talked with them about not having done much explicit discussion with Dee about sex and kink before getting involved, they (my therapist) asked whether I'd read much about these issues. They noted that I'm fairly widely read and asked why I hadn't read poly-kink related things like The Ethical Slut or The Topping Book and The Bottoming Book. I didn't really know.
My ex had a copy of The Ethical Slut and wanted me to read it when we were transitioning out of monogamy. I started to, but the book, combined with the deeply uncomfortable situation I was in, was too much and I didn't read more than a few pages. Maybe that has something to do with it. Thinking of reading that book now feels threatening. Dangerous.
I think it would make sense to read the topping and bottoming books; it could help me learn how and when to express and negotiate sex and kink interests and activities. (I'm planning to order copies.) Right now, I get stuck. This is what happened with Dee, I think. At first, talking explicitly about sex seems presumptive. It would be rude to assume the other person is interested. And later it's somehow too late and doesn't feel natural. I'm looking for a perfect time and there isn't one. The therapist suggested this might be an issue and it made sense. "I'm looking for that intersection of curves on a graph," I laughed. "Let's see; the lines intersect right there; ok! Let's talk! That was easy."
Dee has suggested I get on Fetlife again. Someone that Danae and I met at LRA (and with whom we spent an hour or more talking about electronics work and restoring vintage vibrators) gave us their Fetlife name too. But being on that platform again is terrifying too. Years ago, someone sent me a message suggesting we get together. It was mildly suggestive at most, but it was terrifying and I left the platform because I just didn't now how to respond. Thinking of being there is still both scary and, because I don't seem to relate to people on social media the same way most other people do, frustrating.
I really want to be a part of this social world, but then...something happens. Maybe it's only appealing in theory. Maybe I just want to want these things. Or maybe I'm just so terrified by lack of structure and not knowing how to behave that it overwhelms any positive feelings.
I talked with my therapist about structure too. I'm terrified of a lack of known, understood structure to operate within. I'm terrified of trying to impose my own structure on others because I'm petrified at the thought of feeling that my needs are more important than (or maybe even as important as) those of other people.
Detail aside, sex feels scary right now in ways that it never has before. Now, not only does the thought of sex with Dee give me great anxiety, but even thoughts of sex with Danae are making me feel, if not exactly anxious, a bit nervously disinterested. In the past, even when I've had negative sexual experiences with others, I was still very interested in sex with my partner.
Now, instead, while characters in silly furry smut seem very appealing (for instance, a cute story on Literotica about a human military group working with lagomorophic aliens who relax through sex provided the basis for fun casual daydreaming), sex in real life, especially with people other than Danae, is scary.
I don't know why, and I don't like feeling this way. Through a lot of my 20s and 30s I felt like I was missing out on so very much, sexually, that I wanted in my life. I felt deep fear that maybe I missed my chance to do all these things that I wanted to do and people I knew were doing but circumstances kept me from. Do I now not want those things? Or am I just too scared about them to realize I want them? I've even flirted with the thought that I might not be interested in romantic or sexual relationships with other people. That maybe I'd be happy just being involved with Danae exclusively. I don't think that's true, but it feels safe.
Feelings of safety are very appealing right now. There isn't even really that much to be afraid of, but I feel afraid of things I can't even really identify.