A little while ago I became a Patron of one of my heroes, Amanda Palmer. Being a Patron means I help to pay for her art. It means she can make the art & music she likes without needing a record company. Right now, she is 8 months pregnant & yesterday she stood naked in full body paint in front of the New York Public Library to raise awareness for literacy & gather books from supporters for needy children. She stood as a living replica of the Verity statue by Damien Hirst & as people dropped off books she moved to a new position. Anyone who has been 8 months pregnant will know standing still for any amount of time is difficult & painful so I was in awe of her efforts. Literacy is something Amanda obviously feels passionate about, as I do, so when she stated in a recent interview that her favourite children’s book is ‘The Velveteen Rabbit‘ I could not ignore what is for me, a meaningful coincidence. Continue reading
What I hear is “I don’t trust myself”.
Let me put this down here so that you can hear me. So it can never be deleted. Established 2013.
What I want from you is friendship. I want the kind of friendship that develops over years. Where trust is given but also earned. Where we know so much about each other that it is comfortable & safe. Where we can spend hours together doing activities & our partners can trust us. I want to be able to talk about anything & everything. I want to be able to talk about politics without one of us getting angry & I want to be able to talk about sex without it becoming about you & me. It is not about you & me. It is about the bond.
It does not matter to me that I am attracted to you. I am attracted to lots of people. I would argue that no one is friends with anyone they are not, on some level, attracted to. It is simple biology. Desire is natural. What happens in our heads is entirely ours & no one can judge that. Dreams are not actions.
You said you find this situation unusual. That I would be honest with Corsmor about how I feel. The proposition that you & I can be close without having to have a sexual relationship, you find new & unusual. Well perhaps it is by today’s standards. Today’s standards of unachievable romantic-movie versions of love, friendship & marriage. To me marriage is about constantly learning from each other because you can be completely honest without fear of recrimination or embarrassment. It’s about accepting the other person & vowing to help them become someone more than they are. I see friendship the exact same way. Real friendship. It’s like a marriage & both are hard work. Sure, most of the time they flow along nicely in a routine but you have to keep a constant vigil on that. It stops being easy if no one cares & no one puts in effort.
So here I am, married, which I always wanted to be but never thought I would be. Me. Married. & Corsmor – married? Do you know how many times I have had to field the question,
“How did you get him to marry you?”
It is somewhat insulting & shows how little they know him. I didn’t ‘get him’ to do anything. We fell in love. We spent many years developing a connection & friendship before we ever became a couple & before ever having sex but we had been committed to each other from day one. We both knew we would spend forever together & we’d go to the ends of the earth to make that happen. And we did. That’s the difference.
You & I both have partners who love us & who we love back. They are significantly awesome people. They are the number one’s. They are what makes both of us special. She comes first & so does he. I respect her & I respect what you have together.
I am committed to my friendship with you in the same way I am committed to my marriage. I am committed to learning about you. To being there when you need me & annoying you when you don’t. It’s not logical in my head. It’s just a bond that we seem to have. A bond that I would like to see become something more than friendship, something like best friends, or brother & sisters. But in reality, it probably has a league of its own.
If this is something that you want – if it’s a desire you share or you see this potential in me, then please, keep talking. If not, just say goodbye & let this end. Go back to how you were before we talked. & be happy. Because I can’t do this if you are scared. I can’t do this if you’re unhappy. & I won’t do this if every day we’re faced with fear. Trust yourself. Trust me. If we don’t have that, then there’s nothing here.
Light many lamps & gather round his bed.
Lend him your eyes, warm blood, & will to live.
Speak to him; rouse him; you may save him yet.
He’s young; he hated war; how should he die
When cruel old campaigners win safe through?
But Death replied: ‘I choose him.’ So he went,
& there was silence in the summer night;
Silence & safety; & the veils of sleep.
Then, far away, the thunder of the guns.
— Siegfried Sassoon: The Death-Bed
The desperation that filled me a month ago is easing slowly every day. I am distracted by the fact that in a month I will leave the job I have been doing for 10 years & training my replacement. A decision Corsmor & I made when we found out about Pip & now I have to accept & live with it despite the fact things have changed. They are moving my job to Sydney & we decided not to go – I try every day not to think about the ‘what-if’s’ & just hope that somehow this will turn out right.
I remind myself that I am not alone. That many women & men have gone through this & so much worse before. I do get comfort from knowing that time may mend this & must be patient. It is an exercise in tolerance & fear all at once.
There is one phrase from 50 Shades of Grey certainly worth retaining – “kinky fuckery”. I like the sound of that.
After now having read all three books in the series & having spoken to my friends about what they thought I am overwhelmed by how many of my friends have improved their sex lives (if only for a short while, or until the next craze) by using the book to talk to their partners about what they want to try. In that way, I think these books are a good thing.
Like the movie ‘9 1/2 weeks’ or ‘Basic Instinct’ I am sure 50 Shades will fade out into the long list of sexual encounters we have all had that have taught us something or opened our minds a little but I for one hope that next time I get on top of it before all the hype.
If you are going my way down the Good Girl Highway then it is well past any shade of Grey… I am astonished at how many of the women I know think the actions in such prose are new… Or perhaps it’s just new to them? Well it is a long highway & the origins of BDSM are unclear, but the origin of wanting it are not. It begins when girls become women & want, ever so desperately, to be referred to by their men as “good girls”…
I found this article interesting – I like the break down on myths & catchy title 🙂 It left me with a lot to think about.
Heaven for Athiests by Valerie Barbaro
Published in the July / August 2011 / The Humanist
(click on picture below for link)
I dream of wayward gulls
And all Landless Loves
Rare moments of Winter Sun
Privacy, for everyone
~~ William Clare