Been There, Done That. So What?

May 30, 2011 at 10:18 pm (Sex) (, , , )


I’ve been around the block more than a few times, but I’m not ashamed to admit there are quite a few things I haven’t done yet that I’d like to. Part of the reason for that is the struggle to find a partner who’s interested in trying a few of the things I want to try. And thus the gripe that is the core of this post – the whole “been there, done that” attitude I seem to encounter in men.

Maybe it’s just me and my choices in men, but I seem to get this a LOT.

Me: “Let’s do X!”

Him (with a world-weary sigh): “I’ve been doing X since I was 13.”

Me: “Okay… well, how about Y?”

Him (rolling his eyes but trying to be nice about it): “My ex-girlfriend was so into that, I’m kind of tired of it.”

Me: “Hmmm, so maybe Z?”

Him: “You don’t want to try Z. Trust me.”

At which point I put the girls back in the boulder holder and we go on our merry way.

Really, why are so many of the men I know dismissive of attempts to be adventurous just because they’ve already tried it? Turning up your nose at a suggestion, or looking down at someone for suggesting it, is just simply unkind, and is not being a good playmate. Each person has a unique set of experiences, and the scope of sexual experience is pretty damn broad, so it’s not necessarily a sign of inexperience if a partner hasn’t yet participated in certain acts. And as sex-positive individuals, why not be accepting of the scope of experience of each unique individual as part of what makes them unique?

While you may have been lucky enough to have had the experiences I’m interested in, that doesn’t make you or your sexual history superior to mine. And most importantly – you haven’t done those things with me. If your rule for sexual experience is “been there, done that”, then why are you having sex at all, with anyone? You’ve had a blow job – why get another one? You’ve had intercourse – really, you want that again? Your logic breaks down quickly.

If there’s something you tried already that you really, truly don’t want to experience again, that’s fine – it wouldn’t be fair to ask a partner to repeat an act that you’ve already discovered is not your cup of tea. Sex should be fun for everyone involved. But stay open to new experiences with new people, and don’t be a jaded pain in the ass, or you won’t get any ass… leastways not from me.

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Another one.

May 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm (Photos) (, )


I’m in a pretty stressed-out place right now, and anything I might write in this mood would certainly end up offending more than a few someones. So instead, I’ll post another picture.

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Clamps.

May 14, 2011 at 10:22 am (Sex) (, , , )


I have one boyfriend in particular to thank for my nipple clamps. We spent several weekends in a row visiting “novelty” shops. He persisted in buying me pair after pair until we found the ones that were just right – fine-tuned to provide the exact level of pain. Ugly things, they are – large, shiny and complicated-looking. But he succeeded in finding the ones that are perfect for me.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

He was tall, dark and handsome – Italian. He had the social skills of a squirrel – skittish and apt to run away. He also loved trees as much as a squirrel, and on our first date, he stroked and embraced the tree in my front yard.

On our second date, he filled a bathtub with scalding hot water and invited me in. I let it cool down first, then floated my assets across the water. Perhaps it was that scene – my buoyant breasts on the surface – that made him decide my nipples were begging for clamps.

He was the kind of man who was always prepared, and he had a new waterproof vibrator waiting for me. It had a smiley face on it, and one thing I’ve always regretted (not the only thing, in this case) is that he didn’t actually give me that vibrator. Maybe it was how he used it, but I loved that vibrator. It was good to me.

He was clumsy and apt to hurting me without realizing it – slamming me around or squeezing me too hard. But he was patient – oh, was he beautifully, remarkably patient. A rainy Saturday morning with nothing else to do, we decided to get out of bed and sprawl naked in his living room instead. The vibrator came along, and he got into a comfortable position, and worked me over until I came. Never a hint of frustration, never a twitch; no words of encouragement, either, that I recall, but just steady, continual focus until the task was accomplished. When I was through, he declared, in his dry yet peppy way, “Girls are fun.”

That was the thing – girls were physical puzzles to be figured out, challenges to overcome, nice toys with a surprise inside. But that was his limit; venturing into an emotional engagement with a girl was beyond him. He couldn’t carry a conversation even if it were as light as a feather. His most common verbal output was reading a sign or billboard aloud. I was frustrated – in a way, furious – to discover he moderated a very active online messageboard with thousands of posts to his name. He was conducting discussions on topics we could potentially have in common and share over coffee, tea, pipes and cigarettes; but it had never occurred to him that I might like to be talked to, or with, on any of those subjects. He loved playing with me, but relating to me? Wasn’t possible.

I was torn. He could make me come, and not just with the vibrator. That became the priority – walk in my door, or I in his, and orgasm was imminent. Laying on my back on the sofa, my hips up on the armrest, he folded himself down to me and ran his tongue into those wet, hungry folds and I came. In bed, he pulled me on top of him, both of us upright and tangled together with just enough room for a finger to reach my clit as he fucked me, and I came. But I didn’t care about him, because he couldn’t give me anything to care about – nothing revealed, no history, no dreams, no opinions. We lived in different cities, and the distance kept the sex chemicals bubbling, but that was all there was.

I broke up with him by email.

He asked if we could stay friends, and I said no.

The nipple clamps he gave me are stored in a suitcase with other rarely-used toys. But every time I get that ache in my nipples that only clamps can satisfy, I think of him.

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Through a different lens.

May 11, 2011 at 8:35 pm (Real Life) (, , , )


Like so many women, I struggle with my self-image. I see all the imperfections when I look in the mirror. I see what I lack when I look at other women. After much hard work, I’ve been able to reach the point where I can say a sincere “thank you” to a compliment rather than a reflexive denial of whatever was being complimented, which is an accomplishment in and of itself. For the most part I am accepting of myself as I am – my weight, my shape, my sagging breasts, my stretch marks. But acceptance isn’t the same as self-love, and I don’t generally use many positive words to describe my physical self.

As I’m putting myself back “out there”, dating in search of an additional intimate relationship, this self-image issue has become problematic. Especially in poly dating, I’m constantly wondering and comparing myself to other playmates or partners. Fatter/thinner, more kinky/less kinky, older/younger, whatever – I’m having a hard time accepting that my partners will see the differences as just that – differences – and not judge me for not being X, Y or Z like their other partners are. That’s totally my problem to deal with, and not theirs; but while I’m working on changing my way of thinking, it can be a painful struggle, and it gets in the way of my ability to be open, relaxed and comfortable with my partners. I don’t like that and I want to change.

As a result of my self-esteem issues, I’ve always hated having my picture taken. There are very, very few pictures of me that I actually like and think show me at my best. I have long wanted to have some pictures shot by a professional photographer with the skills and techniques to make me look my best. I wanted some nice shots for profile pics, and I wanted some sexy shots I could share with my partners and playmates for fun. I’ve been thinking about this for over a year and even knew who I wanted to work with – a local photographer who likes working with curvy, plus-size, and unconventional beauties. He takes gorgeous photos and has made women of my same shape and size look phenomenal.

So I did it. I booked a session, picked out some outfits, hauled my husband along for moral support, and ended up stripping in front of a stranger with a camera. It will rank up there as one of the best experiences of my life. I stopped caring about my love handles; I barely thought about my double chin; and once I went topless I was, eventually, able to remove my hands from my breasts and let them be seen and photographed exactly as they are.  With just a few nudging suggestions from the photographer and the DH, I ran through poses and peeled off layers of clothing until I was down to a cute pair of panties and nothing else. And I loved it. It was fun!

Once I donned my clothing again and the pictures were uploaded from camera to computer, we all sat down and watched the slideshow of 300+ shots roll by. Of course there are many from bad angles, wrong lighting, awkward poses, weird hand placement, whatever — but then there would be one that was simply amazing. Another one where I looked radiant. Another that was coy and sexy. Another where I looked happy. Another that showed off my curves. And another. And another. And I had to struggle not to cry.

I am beautiful. I am sexy. In my own unique way, with my faults and my features combined, I am beautiful. I may not fit everyone’s definition of beauty, but that’s okay.

It was a revelation. I have never been able to see myself that way before. And I have all these pictures to remind myself, at any time, that being myself is sexy and gorgeous and… good.

Alice

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A story in search of a title.

May 7, 2011 at 4:02 pm (Sex) (, , , )


I was told to undress, told to kneel on the bed, my feet slightly off the side, my knees slightly apart. He slid a pillow under me, pulled the blanket over me, asked if I was comfortable. He didn’t tell me what he was going to do, and I didn’t ask. I just waited.

I don’t remember if he undressed for this. I felt him touch me, slowly and gently stroking over the curve from hip to thigh, then again, moving inwards towards the core. He barely brushed his lips down the center, and I felt his breath as a warm tickle, followed by small kisses – not hesitant, but not urgent. He didn’t probe, he didn’t push inward, just kissed and nuzzled. It was obvious this was not about my pleasure – he did not touch or kiss his way down to my lips or clit. It was only my ass he was interested in.

It didn’t take very long. I heard his breathing change, a catch, an exhalation. He got up and I heard running water in the bathroom. He came back, removed the blanket and told me I could lie down now.

He later explained, in an offhanded way: “Lately that’s the only way I can come.”

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Jealousy vs. Envy

May 6, 2011 at 9:04 pm (Polyamory, Relationship) (, , , , )


I was asked recently if I experience jealousy in my open relationship with my husband. My honest answer is no, I haven’t really felt jealousy in several years. I have had moments of distress, however, especially as our relationship evolves and new elements are added. The question made me start thinking about the distinction between jealousy and… whatever that form of distress I keep feeling might be. Like most good citizens, I like labels – I like giving a name to something. So as I am wont to do, I started looking up words on dictionary.com to see what made sense to me:

Jealousy: resentment against a rival, a person enjoying success or advantage, etc., or against another’s success or advantage itself. Mental uneasiness from suspicion or fear of rivalry, unfaithfulness, etc., as in love or aims.

Lots of people have written lots of blogs about jealousy in open or polyamorous relationships, and many of them agree that the root of jealousy is fear. When my relationship with the DH became open, which was shortly before we got married, I wasn’t prepared for it, and it terrified me. It wasn’t completely a surprise – we’d talked about monogamy, and we’d talked about non-monogamy, and I was doing a fair amount of fucking around when we first met, so openness did seem to make sense. But we didn’t exactly agree to an open relationship. He opened it for us. I felt blindsided and spent about a month in a deep depression. But I also felt compelled to figure out why I was in such distress over something that had been in the back of my mind for a long time. I wanted to figure out what I was afraid of.

For me, it was a fear that I wouldn’t be “enough”, that he would find someone better – someone sexier, more adventurous, more open, someone stronger, bolder, happier, more confident – whatever it might be, better than me. It took me about a year to build up my faith in our relationship and to start believing in the fundamentals of any good open relationship:

  • One human being cannot fulfill all the needs – social, emotional, sexual, intellectual, or otherwise – of another human being. Period. It’s just completely unrealistic.
  • One human being does not have a finite amount of love to give. It’s not he-loves-me, he-loves-me-not. He can love me, and love someone else, without stopping loving me.
  • He loves me for who I am – unique, neurotic, sexy, bossy, moody, loopy me – and is committed to a lifelong partnership with me.

As I started living and breathing and accepting these principles as reality, the jealousy gradually dissolved and ultimately disappeared. I can’t say when I stopped having painful jealous reactions to his activities, but I did realize one day that those feelings were gone. And that made me feel a lot freer to do my own thing and start exploring what I wanted out of this arrangement, and to figure out what kinds of relationships I wanted to nurture.

But then the other discomfort started. DH would go out to play, and I would be at home, and I’d feel icky. I’d rewrite my profiles on various dating sites, I’d gird my loins and toss together another Craigslist ad, and I’d paw through the resulting mediocre responses and dick pics, and I’d feel icky. I couldn’t find what I was looking for, but meanwhile he’s living it up with what seemed like a new partner every week. And I felt icky green envy.

Envy: a feeling of discontent or covetousness with regard to another’s advantages, success, possessions, etc.

For me, envy doesn’t seem to be fear-based – at least I can’t find the fear after digging around beneath it. It’s simply: you’re having something I’m not and it’s something I want, damnit! You’re having hot sex. You’re feeling the rush of delight at discovering someone new. You’re having adventures. Where’s mine? When’s my turn?

I don’t resent his pleasures, and I don’t fear that his relationships will detract from or harm the one we have.  But I’m definitely discontented, watching him have fun. I know it’s not peaches and cream for him – he seems to meet mainly single women who eventually find themselves a monogamous relationship and morph into “just friends”, and he feels a degree of frustration over the inability to find someone who is open to the intimacy he wants as well as the long-term potential. But it seems like it is a lot easier for him to meet women than it is for me to meet men, which stirs the green envy in me.

I even struggle with envy towards my few playmates who have other playmates, as well. As an avowed introvert and a bit of a misanthrope, nevertheless I’m craving more human interaction these days, and I want that interaction to include both intellectual and sexual stimulation. I can’t seem to get enough – and my “enough” threshold is pretty low compared to other people, so it’s frustrating that I’m struggling to fill my minimal needs in this area. And that frustration leads to envy over having to share people with other people. They should all be mine, damnit, mine mine mine! Except when I want to be by myself, of course, when I wish they would all leave me the hell alone.

A cure for jealousy came to me eventually, so I suppose at some point I will learn how to transmogrify envy into compersion. For now, it’s a flaw I’m very much conscious of, and trying to manage the best I can without placing unreasonable demands on anyone I care for.

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