Sometime during the summer before heading off to college, I was told by a friend that Beta was interested in hooking up with me.

I was also interested. Beta was slightly attractive with a nice body and I’d known him for a few years through my ex turned bff. There was no interest in pursuing a relationship on either part and no-strings-attached sex seemed perfect for me before moving to another state for college.

Id met the goal of having my sexual debut, but I knew (mostly anecdotally) that the more I had sex, the more comfortable I would be with myself and my sexuality. I was interested in getting to a point where I knew my body and limits more and saw sex as more pleasurable overall. I was a young lady on a mission!

I think it important to note here that I’ve always prided myself on taking charge of my sexuality and knowing what I’ve wanted. I’ve felt in control since the beginning. Powerful almost. Mastering the art of seduction.

Beta and I didn’t have much chemistry so sex was sub par at best. But, before the night was over I aimed to try fellatio. I felt fairly good about my performance but returned home without thinking much of it. Within the next two weeks, my bff had contacted me again on behalf of Beta for another rendezvous. Apparently, despite our lack of chemistry, Beta praised my phenomenal fellatio skills and, interested in fine-tuning my talent, we planned another meet-up.

Without many places to go, our friends got together and we all went to hang out at a local park. Beta and I wandered off and I proceeded to perform amazing fellatio in the park on a small blanket that we had brought for comfort.

Overall, it was an interesting experience. I liked having the comfort of practicing skills on an associate and the no-pressure situation of casual hook-ups. There were no feelings of embarrassment for shitty and awkward sex or need to justify my intentions.

Ive probably spoken to/seen Beta 1-2 times since then but if he were to walk in this room right now we’d be able to catch up like no time was lost. I’m still friends with our mutual friend and the entire ordeal hasn’t come up since then & that was 12 years ago!

Looking back I am always astonished about how direct and confident I had been regarding my sexuality and desires. Even before I truly had the self-esteem to back it, Ive always made a commitment to myself that I would project an air of confidence, knowing that it was much sexier than the insecurities most teens/young 20 yr olds project.
Id say that paid off.


Fantastical nightmare

While most people have experienced daydreaming, many of them indulge at a healthy rate. Since childhood, I have been on journeys throughout time, often rethinking the past and conjuring up my ideal or feared future. I have only in the last few years become aware of how unhealthy my relationship with my own mind can be. In fact, it is this fantasizing/day dreaming that connects me to my addiction of seducing people. A partner that I was involved with in 2013 was the first to ever comment on my habit of daydreaming and how it affects the way that I interact with my world. At that point, I started monitoring how often I end up daydreaming and seeing if any themes emerged.  I believe that fantasy, for me, generally consist of one of the following:

1. Rethinking the past

As someone who was very passive throughout her childhood, I would often dwell on what I “should have” said or done in a given situation. I continue this habit even as an assertive adult. There is always a “better” way that an incident could have gone. My imperfect year is about radically accepting myself and the choices I make. I have done well in life so far, considering; time to start trusting myself.

How does this present in my addiction? Once I begin losing desire for my current partner, I become consumed with idealizing my past partners- how amazing they were, how great that thing they do with their thumb was, how they treated me. It never ends. This is the cycle with me. I move on from my current partner while pulling my last partner back into my fantasy by telling them about their greatest qualities. At the same time, Ive begun eyeing a new person to loop into my world. None of this has been based in reality.

2. Planning and re-planning the future. Then re-planning again.

I run through possibilities A thru Z in my head about everything from the mundane (what will happen when I go to pick up my check from work today) to the exciting (what would life be like if my professor and I fell in love and ran away together. What would life be like?). A piece of this fantasy surrounds my planning for the worse. I gauge my reactions and come up with a solution. This calms any most anxieties I have around any given situation. If I know what I will do if the worst case happens I will always appear cool, calm, and collected. And I do. People often remark at my “laid back” personality. If only they knew the turmoil of running through 101 possible outcomes.

How does this present in my addiction? Much like the example, I fantasize about how perfect someone and I will be together, focusing on all of the things we have in common, never the things that we do not. The scary part for me is that my fantasy is not always best case scenarios. I often run through an entire lifetime with a person including how we many end. Ive been dream-cheated on countless times, walking in on monogamous partners with someone else in bed. Ive also had unfortunate situations in which a potential partner is involved in a tragic accident- sometimes fatal, sometimes not. How would I handle that situation? This is the most frustrating and debilitating of my habits. After thinking through possibilities from your own perspective, I believe I limit the actual life that someone can bring into my world. Unpredictability makes us human. I want to let go and experience this.

Managing daydreaming has only been successful at times when I prioritize practicing remaining “present”. I practice this through meditation and overall bringing my awareness back throughout the day. Letting go of the past and reaffirming with myself that I am a beautiful, imperfect person allow me to refrain from dwelling on things that have already happened. Reminding myself that I am completely capable of managing situations as they arise have helped me refrain from over-thinking the “would be” situations in my future. I hope to shed some light on this in the near future through therapy.

The Imperfect Year

I like being in control. This goes beyond sadism. I like being right and having a plan B, C, D, and E.

There is no way to retain control when your world is unrecognizable, so any attempt at doing so can make you feel more lost than ever. I’m in need of finding comfort with imperfection. While I strive to work on myself right now, letting go of the anxieties that I have to do and say all of the “right” things during recovery will preserve my sanity. There is no perfect way to be an addict. Or a partner. Or a daughter, etc. My need for control wants me to focus on everything but my emotions. If I am busy making sure that everything around me is in order perhaps I will appear to be in order? More distorted thinking. By letting go, I have no excuses. I am better able to work on myself.

This year, I want to be imperfect. I am aspiring to put things into the universe and not having regrets or second thoughts that make me feel less than.

Through accepting imperfection I seek peace.

The Best Me

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “New Skin.”

As many people do around this time of year, I have set a goal for myself. Typically, I would have a list of up to 10 things to attempt changing once the clock strikes midnight ringing in the new year. This year, all I want to do is wake up each morning with the commitment of being the best me that I can be. This idea of new skin is interesting because the only “me” that I’ve ever know, the old skin, feels so uncomfortable right now. As I continue to learn more about myself each day- my addictions, my past hurts, my fears, I am slowly working on becoming a more functional partner and better person.

This morning my partner and I continued a conversation that we mistakenly began last night (NYE). I’m torn between leaving her completely in the dark and being honest about any breakthroughs I have as I learn about the role my childhood may have played in my sex and love addiction. Being honest means having very difficult conversations that I don’t think she is emotionally able to handle. She frequently gets very upset and ends up in tears, which makes me feel horrible. As we continue talking more about insight into my compulsions and behaviors, I feel as though I am exposing evidence that I will never have a successful relationship. Even though we have discussed how much easier it would be for the coward in me to just walk (run) away from this relationship to return to the comfort of my addictions, I am committed to putting work into this for at least the next year. So why, then does that still feel inauthentic? Every day is new and challenging as I discover my true self and I have recognized the cognitive dissonance that exists between what I am logically capable of achieving (a healthy relationship) and the dissociation I experience when I can not initiate physical intimacy with my partner (feeling as though I’m standing in cement). Leaving her in the dark means that perhaps I can pretend to be the partner that she needs and hope that eventually the groups and therapy will pay off enough so that the fantasy becomes the reality. As I reread that last sentence, I can hear how unhealthy that sounds. Attempting that level of dissociation is destructive to my mental health and the sanctity of a relationship. I think the silver lining of this choice would be that Id eventually end up justifying cheating which would mean sticking it through with my partner for just a while longer. then again. and probably again. Somewhere inside I do hope that the therapy pays off so that I can have a sense of normalcy. I’d be interested in meeting the “me” that sets healthy boundaries, finds comfort in intimacy, and isn’t trying to bury past hurts with sex.

So for this new year, striving to be the best me that I can be does mean that by the time I’m ringing in 2016 I will be a radically different person. Hopefully. And that scares the hell out of me!