errantember: (Default)
With four girlfriends and as many possibilities as I had at Flipside, it's pretty hard to believe I haven't gotten laid for weeks. I've been pondering why, exactly, this is, and while it's complicated, what it really boils down to is this:

I don't trust people to be ok with casual sex.

Almost every decision I made that lead to me turning down obvious interest or failing to follow up on intriguing possibilities boils down to this.

My time is so limited right now, and I'm *still* not getting close to getting everything done. I miss my existing partners, who are all also very busy people. If I could actually have casual but meaningful sexual experience on the side, I would do it. But I absolutely do *not* have time to carry any additional full relationships, and my experience so far makes it very hard to have faith that potential causal partners could keep things casual.
errantember: (Default)
I'm a Libra, and while it's not surprising that I have two Aquarian girlfriends, I'm also involved with two Cancers and a Virgo. :)

I'm a lucky motherfucker any way you slice it!

Check.

Jul. 11th, 2009 06:48 pm
errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
Date Checklist:

1) Wash sheets CHECK
2) Clean bathroom CHECK
3) Remove chainsaw from living room sofa CHECK
...

Prejudice

May. 29th, 2009 02:26 am
errantember: (Default)
I was floating my mind over my general feelings about monogamy, and I finally arrived at a short opinion that I feel is correct.


No one has ever achieved happiness *because* of monogamy.

No couple has ever achieved happiness *because* of monogamy.

Discuss.

Read more... )
errantember: (Default)
...my Non-Violent Commmunications book? I'm fairly sure I loaned it out to someone, but I didn't make a note of it in Delicious Library.
errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
I'm happy to report that I'm still negative for everything that TSTD tests for in this panel.
errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
True to their word, I got my tSTD results today, and I'm still negative for all 7 things they test for! They don't test for HPV, and God knows we need better screening for that. Hopefully with all the recent hooplah surrounding it, they'll add it soon.

Some people had requested more details on the experience. I went online to find the nearest sampling station and pay my $250. I was given my confidential PIN, and then had to make a brief phone call to tSTD. They confirmed my payment and let me know that the clinic I was going to required a name, but I could use any name I wanted. I gave them a name, and they faxed the request directly to the clinic. Two hours later, I was at the clinic having my blood drawn and peeing in a cup. I'm fairly certain they use the same network of clinics/labs that many doctors use. The place I went was on James Casey. It was a little run-down looking, but otherwise the experience was fine. After 2-3 business days, they either call or e-mail you to let you know your results are available. At that point, you have to call them to get the results verbally first, before they release them onto the website. The results are delivered by a counselor who presumably knows what to say if you test positive for something. Both times on the phone the wait was less than 5 minutes. After the phone call, the results are released on the website (indexed only by your PIN) for printing and framing.
errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
For STDs, that is. At least, I got the blood drawing and cup peeing out of the way. I used:

http://tstd.org/?gclid=CP336_Km3o8CFQdEFQod8Ezb7Q

This time both due to time constraints and also because I like to get the HerpesSelect test done once a year. So far I've been negative for both types, but I think even the most fastidious poly person can't expect to avoid oral herpes forever. I think I'm going to alternate between the Waller St. clinic ($15) and tSTD ($250) every six months to increase coverage and decrease cost. Waller St. tests for everything but herpes, but not only is getting onto their schedule time consuming, it also requires being awake at 8:30 AM.
errantember: (Default)
So I've had:

1 4-year relationship break up over last Valentine's Day

1 lover I've only been dating for two months move to Seattle

1 person I've been interested in for a while but couldn't date due to relationship #1 above hit me up for a date to the Kerrville music festival this weekend (Wohoo!)

1 person I've become re-aquainted with after about a year of no contact who clearly likes me, but probably couldn't handle poly relating right now, *but* just moved out of her boyfriend's house into her own place for reasons yet unexplored.

1 person I finally got over my multi-year obsession with enough to tell her how I feel tell me she's not interested right now despite my 12-page, 2 poem letter spanning 4 cards. :)

At least I like her boyfriend.

1 person I've admired for years invite me to her birthday party that both conflicts with my Kerrville date and will also be attended by the person immediately above

1 reply to an e-mail I sent to my very first lover, a relationship of 4 years, which was broken up by her getting hooked up with a friend of mine of 7 years, who, 9 years of no contact whatsoever later are not only still together, but are likely soon moving to Austin. The e-mail and the information about the move came from completely independent sources, and their occurance within one day of one another after 9 years of no contact is 100% coincidence. Their 9 year relationship and accompanying lack of contact was my first truly polyamorous relationship experience.

I got bled early. :)

I also lost my fucking camera at Goddess Night. A day later no one has found it.

It's been a long day.
errantember: (Default)
I managed to solve a last-minute pet sitting emergency, and will now be able to attend Poly Big Fun 99.9% Loki-free!

Hopefully I will come back enlightened and just as pregnant as I am now. :)
errantember: (Default)
Not that I'd likely ever do that in such a personal space, BUT...

Number 5) Direct evidence of sexual activity
Number 4) The fact that they're even getting tested means their more responsible than 95% of the human population.
Number 3) Body language in an STD clinic is about 80% more informative than normal. :)
Number 2) You can find out if they have a partner who cares enough to come along.

And...

NUMBER 1) If you date them in the near future, they can't say "Well, I'm usually up to date, but I haven't been tested recently..."


I went to the state clinic today to get my semi-regular STD screen. Not anticipating any problems, will post results here when I get them. Unfortunately not all of them will be available for Poly Big Fun, since the turnaround time on the HIV and one other is two weeks. I'm considering going to planned parenthood or something to get same-day HIV results, but my behavior recently has been conservative enough that I'm probably just going to take the results I *do* have by then with me and let anyone interested at PBF make their own informed decision.
errantember: (freedom)
Today has been a busy day.

I spent the first 3 hours of my day actually having to be physically present at work (a blessed rarity) in a meeting that only peripherally effected me while panicking about Valentine's Day deadlines. No customers were helped during this meeting. No love letters were written.

I then got a call and finalized the "official" change from a physical to a non-physical relationship with the partner I've spent the most time with over the past four years, and the only person I was currently really physical with at all.



Happy Valentine's Day.



There are actually some really good things about this, but it's hard to remember what they are right now.

Anyway.

In the meantime, I've been writing a fuckload of e-mails, cards, letters, and to-be-recorded phone messages to her and various other people, past an present, who I'm thinking about on Valentine's Day.

The following excerpt is to someone I've been hiding a huge crush from for years who I've finally gotten to know personally enough to take action. I'm fairly certain this won't be the way it's finally delivered, because it's too over the top even for her, but it was too awful not to share somehow, lest I escape unpunished for my unforgivable taste. Perhaps it's soiled presence will serve as a weapon of petty vengeance (the only kind) against the most bipolar of all holidays during my time of discontent.

Names have been omitted to protect the guilty.

(had crush, like you, want you, etc...)
...
have a whole collection of desires
many of which involve clothing
and all of which,
like the clothing,
are completely optional.
And if it would bring happiness to your life
to pursue any of them with me
I might just shit my pants with joy.
After which I would take a shower
and change into different pants
before we spent any time together.
...



Take that, Valentine's Day.
errantember: (Default)
I just posted this in response to Todfox's request, and re-posting them here seemed topical.

...to indulge my unhealthy penchant for delaying my entry into bed even LONGER.

I'm sure many of these are on major lists, but I've read them all personally at least once and found them helpful:

Redefining Our Relationships: Guidelines for Responsible Open Relationships
by Wendy-O-Matic.

A very good poly primer. Short, useful, covers all the bases, including the controversial idea that parents don't necessarily have to be devoted to each other as long as they are devoted to their child.

Nonviolent Communication - A Language of Life by Marshal B. Rosenberg, Ph. D.

Ever wonder how to communicate strong feelings with making it seem like an attack, or to feel heard and help others do the same? This book helps identify negative patterns of communication and shows positive alternatives. Recommended by Poly Paradise at Burning Man.

Choice Theory and other books by William Glasser

The most effective self-book series I've ever read. Learn to identify the dysfunctional control theory we are all taught by society, our parents, etc., and learn how to break the cycle and stop trying to control other people. A must for "I know what's good for you" people and those with big jealousy issues. I was amazed at how fast I was able to see these patterns in myself, how fast I could choose to work on changing them, and how immediate the results were.

Gay Relationships by Tina Tessina

Mainly poly-friendly because so many gay relationships are, the gay bent of this book tends to take out a lot of the monogamocentric bias almost always present in relationship books, and provides good, clear-headed, step-by-step advise for anyone involved in intimate relationships.

Lesbian Ethics -- Toward New Value by Sara Lucia Hoagland

Extremely valuable re-interpretation of many fundamental aspects of relationships from an outside perspective. The book could not have been developed without a separatist community, but the perspectives and advise are almost all universal.

Survivors of an Open Marriage - Jennifer Gates

A rare counter-example of polyamorous relating. Story of a married couple who tried polyamory and chose eventually to be monogamous. Worth reading both for the reality check and also as a poly "what did they do wrong and how could they have made it work?" skillset challenge. Great for group discussion.

Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus - John Gray, Ph.D.

I can hear the groans already. :) Although this book has both a slight monogamous and sexist bias, it's still invaluable both as a way to understand the things that, for whatever reason, seem to be fundamentally different between the sexes, and also for valuable advise on relating and communicating.

The New Intimacy -- Open Ended Marriage and Alternative Lifestyles by Ronald Mazur

Very pithy for it's small size. A very good book for people who are already in a long-term monogamous relationship, but are looking at branching out and including other people. Covers common pitfalls and solutions, including things like identifying different kinds of jealousy, etc. A good first book for hesitant but interested couples. Look at poly as an evolution of consciousness, which I identify with strongly.

Polyamory The New Love without Limits -- Secrets of Sustainable Initimate Relationships by Deborah M. Anapol

I like the focus of this book on the idea that poly relationships are the solution to the problem of unsustainability that often occurs in monogamous relationships. One reason I've always identified as poly is because I recognized early the inherent pitfalls of monogamy and knew they would likely take away the people I loved unless I found an alternative. Addresses poly identity, jealousy, networking, poly myth, and resonant personal anecdotes.

And, of course:

The Ethical Slut - A Guide to Infinite Sexual Possibilities

The first major poly book I read where I finally realized I'd found my tribe. Lots of good how-to advise from people who have ever so been there. Gets lots of street cred from women who think that poly is some male plot to get laid a lot (it is, but it's a female plot too. :) ) A little more refreshingly in-your-face than most poly books. I've given out at least 8 copies of this now, and need to find a way to write it off my taxes.

I own at least one copy of all of these books and am willing to loan them out. If I don't get them back, our relationship may not be sustainable. :)
errantember: (Default)
...so I'm talking to a partner of mine on the phone about something important, something she's been trying to communicate to me for a long time, something that's potentially threatening our relationship of over three years. I'm very engaged, pacing the house, trying to find the best way to get to understanding, when I realize I'm hearing a water noise that isn't supposed to be there. I run into my master suite, and the hot tub is overflowing all over the floor. There are already water spots several feet into the carpet, and I remember that I had been filling it earlier (a very slow process) and allowed myself to get distracted. I usually set an alarm of some kind while I do this, but I didn't this time and I payed for it. Immediately I think to (and at) myself:

"You stupid motherfucker! How could you possibly let something like this happen! Not only is this flood worse than when the pipe broke, but you never did any of those things to re-enforce the tub pit to prevent this water from getting out into the rest of the house! You *knew* this was inevitable! Why are you so lazy? Why didn't you at least set a fucking alarm!"

Luckily I own a steam cleaner that doubles as a wet-vac. I've already emptied a good 10 gallons of water sucked out of the carpet and mat, and that's only the first run. I'll go to Home Depot tomorrow and get another snail fan like the one I rented last time, and the damage will probably end up being under $200 total. It could easily have been $10k or more.

I've been reading a book called Non Violent Communication (Rosenberg) recently. It was recommended to me by the citizens of Poly Paradise, a polyamory camp at Burning Man. It's about expressing everything in terms of observations, feelings, needs, and requests. It also emphasizes the importance of doing this when communicating with yourself, as we are often our own worst oppressors. So, I'm applying it to the above situation.

The Observation: I let the hot tub overflow while filling it because I was distracted on the phone.
The Feeling: I feel very angry, and also scared (my house might get mold, the walls might fall down, etc.)
The Need: (In this case we discuss the need I was fulfilling, *and* the need I would prefer to have been fulfilling instead.) The first need was to have a better relationship with my partner. That relationship is very important to me, and I felt like paying it close attention without distractions would serve that need. The need I would prefer to have been paying closer attention to was the need for shelter and safety, both physical and economic, represented by my house. I could have chosen a better time for the discussion, set an alarm (or several!) to remind me to check the water, or simply had the discussion without leaving the master suite. Any of these choices would have satisfied both needs. There was also a conflict between my need to provide a better drainage system should this happen again, vs. my general cluster of 50,000 other needs that prevented me from doing it LAST time. Having had my bedroom flooded not once, but twice by this kind of situation, I will likely re-evaluate my priorities and elect to do the improvement project (once things dry off.)

I can't wait for the hot tub (now full of clean water!) to reheat. I could really fucking use it right now.

G'night.

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