In the FB group called Have a Gay Day, the recent topic I’d started where I’d asked how to flirt with women as a woman myself, received some interesting responses from people. In one of those responses, someone criticized the fact that I was gender-specific in my post, rather than allowing space for folks who are non-binary. So I replied to that person’s comment, saying that the reason I specified women, was because I myself am a gay woman. Another interesting response to said topic though, was a suggestion that someone had, where they encouraged me to complement women on things besides their looks. Now, just to clarify, when I’d made this initial post, I did specify that I’m blind…and I did so because I was hoping to receive more advice like the kind that I’m currently talking about. But unfortunately, many of the people who’d commented on this post of mine, had nothing helpful to say. Like, they literally commented just to say something along the lines of “I can’t help you.” And that kinda response is always off-putting to me, no matter the situation it’s about. Because it’s like, why do people even bother responding to things, if they know that they have nothing of value to add to the discussion?
In the FB group called Childfree by Choice, someone posted a topic that talked about how some parents are letting their kids enjoy this time at home in whatever ways would make their kids happy. So for example, some of these parents have been letting their kids watch TV or play with their electronics more than usual. But I bring this up on my blog because I wrote some responses to said topic that I think it’s important to keep record of. The first thing I wrote reads as follows:
There’s nothing wrong with this, at all; for one thing, kids deserve to be kids. This time is shitty for all of us, and kids learning through school-related activities and assignments is not the only way that learning should happen for them. As adults, we don’t only learn through having gone to school or through our workplaces; we learn through just being open to whatever it is that life has to teach us. And I’m saying that that is also how it should be with and for children.
Someone responded to that comment of mine, encouraging me to write another important response, based off their response to my initial comment on this post. I wrote:
I agree with you that it’s good to think about the kids who have shitty parents; and I appreciate that you’ve taken that into consideration. I say what I’ve said here as someone who comes from bad parents myself; but perhaps I have this outlook because I’ve really thought about this sort of thing, given my traumatizing upbringing. Maybe it’s too much to hope that kids will be sensitive enough to learn to entertain themselves and be their best company, the way I had to…but it is a joyful thing to hope for, I think.
I recently wrote a post on my personal FB page that reads:
Something that’s frustrating for me about these times that we’re in, is the fact that whenever my phone rings, I have to answer my phone…even if the number is blocked. Because it could be anyone on my medical team checking in on me…and before these times, I’d just ignore calls that said “no caller ID.” I know there are bigger problems that exist, but that doesn’t mean we should not talk about smaller problems we’re going through. This idea that ‘someone always has it worse’, doesn’t even make sense to me…life is not a competition. Life sucks for all of us sometimes and it’s fine to admit that honestly.
Also on my personal FB page, I recently wrote:
Started watching Once Upon a Time on Netflix today, for the second time around. Because TBH, this show is just that fucking good!! If you’ve never watched it, you sooooo should!! There’s fantastic LGBTQ+ representation in it too…and I can’t wait to see those parts again. It’ll be interesting to see if I catch anything in said show this time that I didn’t catch the first time I watched it…
I wrote an FB status to keep record of a great conversation that I’d recently had with someone. What I wrote reads:
I just had a discussion with a friend that I’d like to memorialize here. I was telling them about how much I love the podcast called Multiamory and how said podcast has really been empowering for me. Like, I’m really enjoying being single, in a Way that I never have before. Because to me, I wanna make sure that the next romantic relationship I get into, which will be the first when I get into because I consciously choose to be with someone, I wanna make sure I know exactly what I want and don’t want that romantic relationship to look like. I think that people place to little value on creating sustainable romantic relationships, and they give thoughtless advice like, “just let romantic love find you.” But for me, I need to be love, I need to live love…and that’s how romantic love will come to me. You gotta put out into the world exactly what you want…and that’s how you actually get what you want, in the end. I’m a huge believer in that when you live with your entire soul, rather than just going through the motions of day-to-day life, the universe follows your lead. And from that point, the universe just gives you everything you need, simply because you are living as your whole self…who you and only you, know yourself to be.
I also shared a status update on my personal FB page that was about the fact that people are making stupid choices, given the times that we’re in. And I wrote an FB status that I’m going to expand on here, which reads:
There are seriously not enough words in any language to convey how infuriated it makes me to know that people are willingly, and proudly, even, violating government orders!!! I cannot, for the life of me, understand how some people can think that this Corona Virus fiasco is a game or a flat out joke. I’ve seen people across social media say that they are following the social distancing rules…but yet in that same breath, they’ll talk about how they’re going to visit friends/family members. And people going outside does not equate to them following the rules!!! And the thing is, this is not just by my standards as someone who’s an immune-compromised person. But the fucking US government has declared this time as a NATIONAL STATE OF EMERGENCY. For my blind blog readers, I capitalized the words “national state of emergency” to emphasize this truth. So put another way, stay, the, fuck, home, folks!!
So ever since this Corona Virus stuff has gotten worse and worse, the school I go to has been sending out weekly emails to everyone literally every Sunday night. And personally, I’m sick of reading those particular emails; there’s nothing new that we need to know…and I really don’t care to hear empty words like “we seem to be making progress,” or “we might be back to having our school in-person by June, just in time for summer!” To be honest, the reason this sort of thing bothers me so damn much, is because I feel like that kinda statement gives people false hope. I mean, I’m not someone who’s been drinking said kool aid so to speak, only because from the time this started, it’s been incredibly dismissive, not to mention annoying as fuck. But even though that’s where I stand on this, I also realize that other people’s realities with regards to this pandemic look very different. And so, I think it’s wrong for people to give false hope, like saying that summer session at school might actually be done in-person. Because some folks may read those words and take them to heart…and then feel heartbroken when that doesn’t actually happen. That is not a good emotional state to put anyone in, ever.
In a Multiamory episode I recently listened to, something that Jase, Emily and Dedeker (the hosts of this podcast) talked about was this perspective of people attracting whatever kinda people that they’re most familiar with. So in my own life, for literally all of my romantic relationships thus far, I attracted people I thought I could fix in some way or people who made me feel like they needed me. But I also gravitated towards people who were abusive in some way, shape or form. Because like it or not, I was familiar with abuse, thanks to both sides of my family of origin being toxic in multiple ways. And so all that being said, it’s only been since my last romantic relationship breakup in August 2018, that I’ve been working on shifting how I think about the kinda romantic relationships I actually want to create for myself. Because that’s the thing: after this last romantic relationship I was in, I’ve realized that who I’ve been in the past did affect what kinda people I dated. It feels weird to type those words, TBH; but those words are part of my truth. And quite frankly, I’m loving this journey I’m on, of putting in tons of effort to figure out what exactly I want my future romantic relationship to look like.
In another episode of Multiamory, Jase, Dedeker and Emily talk with each other about how our current president here in the US has made things so much more difficult than they’ve ever been before. But more specifically, what I want to talk about now, is this idea people have that when women are sexually assaulted or otherwise taken advantage of by a man, they should say something about said treatment. But what makes that frame of mind dangerous in my opinion, is that as a woman, it isn’t always advisable for us to take actions towards injustices that are committed against us. And in fact, an example of this occurring in my own life, was when I lived in San Antonio Texas and was repeatedly violated by a man who I thought I could trust. And when I say that I was repeatedly violated, what I mean is that this man touched my body without getting my consent first. And in that specific situation, I felt at a loss as a woman, especially because I felt like this man would punish me for speaking out. And another thing that made this specific situation much worse for me, was that this man regularly helped me purchase things for my apartment like a washer and dryer, pots and pans and on and on and on…and so, given that he’d been helping me get things that I needed, this caused me to want to tread carefully so that I could keep him around. Because at that time, I didn’t know what my rights were, in terms of my insurance company paying for me to have someone clean and cook for me. And so, this particular man was literally my only option as far as I knew; and so, people not taking into consideration the things that I’ve just outlined here, certainly didn’t help matters any. But yet another thing at play here, was the fact that at that time, I was very much a passive communicator with regards to most things that happened in my world. So I wouldn’t have even thought about the fact that I actually had agency because that was just how my life was then, but also because I was not told by anyone at that time, that I had agency. And when you don’t even know what to ask for help with when it comes to female empowerment, you have no language or knowledge even, about how to make your world feel comfortable and safe for yourself across the board.
But something along these same lines that I also think it’s necessary for me to talk about, is the fact that there are other reasons why as a gay woman who has multiple disabilities and several chronic health conditions, I may respond differently to toxic situations than people might expect me to respond. So for example, on a day that I’ve experienced situations where men have called me sensitive for standing up for myself or others, or where men have expressed that they think I’m fragile because I’m a woman, each of these things will absolutely influence how I respond to those men. Like, maybe I woke up feeling shitty that particular day and having two men say sexist or homophobic things to me just sets me the fuck off. But then maybe on another day, where I woke up feeling ready to conquer the world and a man, say, calls me a pussy, I decide in that moment to just let his comment stay in the air awkwardly, as though I never even heard what he’d said. And I bring this up because it’s important to me to highlight that even if I have the energy to tell him to fuck off, that doesn’t mean I’ll always or even mostly, choose that particular option. Because what so much of my life experience has taught me, is that I have the agency to choose what things that come my way will encourage me to do. Because truthfully, sometimes responding with total silence is the best teacher for people.
In the latest episode of the Multiamory podcast, Emily, Dedeker and Jase talked with a sex worker. And what this particular episode of this show brought up for me, was my beliefs about what it means to be a sex-positive person. So one thing that this week’s Multiamory guest stresses the importance of, is talking to kids about sex/their bodies from kindergarten onward. Now, what this discussion would look like when we’re talking about kindergarteners, would be to explain to those children the difference between good touches from people and bad touches from people. But I also think that part of this discussion about sex with kindergarteners needs to make kids aware that they can choose what happens to their body or what doesn’t happen to their body. This is important because in much of society as things currently stand, kids feel obligated to hug people, given that many grownups in their lives have told them that that’s just what you do when people want to touch you in some way. And while I know it would be hard to undo such harmful thinking, especially given that this way of thinking/reacting has been done the same way for years and years…but we need to become a sex-positive society because that’s part of what it means to make progress in the world. But also, something else I want to add about these kindergarteners’ sex education, is that the kindergarteners should not be separated by male and female genders. All of the kindergartners should stay together in their classrooms, because it also needs to be normalized that boys, girls and those who might identify differently, are all human beings who are growing and learning alongside one another.
Now, as kids get older, the form of sex education that children have needs to change. So for example, once children leave kindergarten, the sex education they have should start to talk about how their bodies are changing, as they’re growing up; all children should learn how boys and girls bodies are different from one another and how boys and girls bodies are similar to one another. And children should also start to learn then, that if they don’t see themselves as being male or female, that that isn’t a problem that needs to be ignored or swept under the rug. Children need to hear from grownups that whoever they are is OK, even if who they are is different from other folks. As I said with kindergarteners, kids who are a bit older than five years old should continue to all be in the same rooms together, learning the same exact things as each other…because they need to continue to understand that bodies are different, no matter who we are or how we identify. And of course, the same thing applies to kids as they get older. They (kids) need to feel that the grownups in their lives who are educating them about sex, are confident in these sex-related discussions. Because if the grownups that are supposed to be teaching kids about sex, don’t use the proper terms for people’s body parts, or if the grownups giggle unnecessarily when having these discussions with kids, then there needs to be different grownups who can be responsible adults, to teach the kids about sex as a normal part of the human experience.
As children near the time of their teenage years, that’s the time when the discussion of them having safe sex should start. And for anyone who needs me to clarify what I mean by that, I mean that abstinence-only education ought to be reformed. So instead of adults telling teens that sex is this big scary thing that only married people should do, teens should know that abstinence is an option that is available to them…but that they will not be shamed or dehumanized for choosing something different than obstaining from sex. It’s important that as I’ve said a few times already, kids become comfortable with the truth that sex is not just for making babies…but that it’s pleasurable and healthy, even. If teenagers have questions about sex, the adults in their lives should answer those questions honestly. And if the adults in their lives don’t know the answers to what kids are asking, they (the adults) need to point teenagers to a resource like Scarleteen.com
…where teens and adults alike can find out all they want to know about sex and sexuality as a whole. Scarleteen.com has been a valuable resource for me growing up, in terms of learning about my body and sexuality…and I still use Scarleteen to this day. And the reason I’m currently gushing about this resource, is because said resource is all about creating a sex-positive environment for everyone, no matter how you identify, what disabilities you may have ETC.
But yet something else that this Multiamory episode brought up for me, was that I agree with Alice Little, who was the guest on this episode. I agree with what Alice says about society needing to shift the way we think about and view sex work. Because in its name alone, we see the word “work” because that’s exactly what it is: people who are in a profession that is likely as rewarding as any other profession one can think of. But sex work has a negative connotation to it, in the majority of society’s minds; and TBH, I think that that’s where most of the harm lies. Because people who feel like sex work is a bad thing, don’t even bother to examine that particular belief of theirs. But I wholeheartedly agree with Alice Little, that sex work is a job that some folks consciously choose to have. And along with that truth, sex work ought to become normalized, especially being that it’s always about making consent a priority and a necessity, even…for all involved parties.