On Letting Go

When I was young and foolish (Ha!  “When…”), I made a grave error in judgment.  I had a friend with a great dry wit and a masterful use of language on whom I suddenly and out of nowhere developed a crush.  Not Serious Feelings, but a fun crush with a side of pants feelings.  When we started spending more time together and hooking up, I made the assumption that he felt the same way I did.  I was very honest from the beginning about the fact that I was also dating other people and in no position to be attached to anyone.  And while that was a true sentiment, I specifically wasn’t super attached to him.

Over the first couple of months, it became apparent that he had a real, serious, deep, romantic attachment to me that I didn’t reciprocate.  While I earnestly cared for him and felt a lot of intimate affection for him, I didn’t feel the same way he did… but I continued to date him.  I finally asked him to coffee five months in and broke things off with him, afraid of hurting him more than I already had.  He later told me that he was in love with me, and that I had been careless with his heart.  He was right – I had been.  He cut off communication with me, and I lost a good friend.

For years, I never understood why our friendship had to end just because we stopped dating.  I couldn’t see past the end of my nose.  “But we had such a great connection!”  I thought.  “Surely, that’s worth saving?”  Because I hadn’t had the excruciating experience of being in long-term love with someone who was in a short-term relationship with me, I couldn’t truly empathize with the fact that he needed to stop seeing and talking to me in order to preserve his mental and emotional well-being.  Now, I can see how if we’d stayed friends, every time I brought up a significant other who I had a deep, long-term, and loving commitment to, it would have killed him.

Some say that when it comes to exes, you can either be the type to burn your bridges or fortify them.  For the longest time, I tried to be one of those people who could be friends with all of their exes, no matter how hurtful that friendship was to me.  I would put a huge, Frozen Smile of Enthusiasm on my face when meeting an ex’s new partner, even if I felt like an earthquake was ripping through me.  I thought that in order to show how cool and strong I was, I had to push through my panic and self-loathing and try to be a good friend.  The older I get, however, the more I realize: I don’t have to do that.  I don’t have to do things that make me unhappy just because they might be what other people want.

I’ve only recently come to realize that it’s okay to let go of a friendship when it doesn’t feel good.  I am genuinely friends with some exes for whom I have a deep and abiding platonic love.  I like their partners and feel grateful for the value that their friendships add to my life.  With some of them, the transition from dating to friendship was easy; with others, it took the work of giving and receiving sincere apologies, forgiveness, and empathy.  Once in a very great while, though, the most simple and kind thing for me to do has been to release myself from a friendship that’s not working for me – just like my friend-turned-lover did so many years ago.  Each time I have, it’s made me saner, more confident, and more joyful.  Sometimes, letting go is a necessary act of liberation and self-preservation.

 

Side Note: I wrote this after receiving a lovely email from an ex with whom I’d cut off contact; he wanted to send me a piece of post.  I spent an agonizing 45 minutes crafting the wording of eight short sentences telling him that I’d made the right decision, and I didn’t want to stay in touch.  I laughed after I sent it, realizing that the reason it took me so long to write this email is because I didn’t want to hurt the feelings of this boy who absolutely fucking crushed me.  That’s what women mean when we say we’re socialized to please others.

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Beat the Heat

It’s a hot one, folks.  Nice to have a little breeze going.

Sinful Sunday

Hooked

The very first thing out of every mouth of every friend of mine here in the States to whom I tell I’m dating an Englishman is, “Ooh – does he have a sexy accent?”*  I often tell friends from Ireland and the UK that the whole bit in Love, Actually about a young Brit coming to the US to get laid is realistic.  They think I’m joking, but there are soooooo many Statesiders who become instantly aroused upon hearing a British accent – even when the word snog is used (that word crawls under my skin like the word “moist” does for some people).

I was never one of these people.  I’ve slept with people from many states and countries with many accents and was never particularly drawn to any specific one… until Banger.  It’s funny how a pattern of arousal can develop because of a strong emotional attachment.  Sometimes, you see someone who looks like an ex, and you immediately want to fuck them.  Or you hear a song that brings you back to a hot encounter, and the first person you see becomes much more attractive.  Or you develop a kink with a partner and every time you meet someone associated with that kink, you feel yourself swell a bit.

Globe, Map, Country, Borders, Old

Until this guy, I thought English accents were lovely, but not particularly arousing.  But after he left, his voice stayed with me.  I could hear it drifting around my head for months, an echoing will-o-the-wisp.  Being in London last summer was jarring at times; I’d hear someone say something exactly in the manner in which he would say it, and I’d swear it was him, only to turn my head and find out that his way of saying that word or phrase was just common in London.

The sex we had was so exquisite that British accents became an element of my schema of lust – a piece of unexpected kindling.

While I didn’t have an attraction to accents for the longest time, I’ve always had an attraction to languages.  When someone speaks to me in another language, especially if they’re fluent in two or more languages (and especially if I have no idea what they’re saying), I feel weak in the knees.  This has everything to do with being a sapiosexual and not much to do with any particular language.  I know this because it doesn’t have to be a foreign language; it can just be a jargon specific to a vocation or field of knowledge with which I am unfamiliar.  When someone starts talking about string theory or calculus or speaks in legalese or medical jargon, it has the exact same effect on me.  I just love a person who loves to learn and knows their shit!  That’s sexy.

 

 

 

*Yes.  Yes, he does.

 

Elust 106

 

Photo courtesy of submiss34f

Welcome to Elust 106

The only place where the smartest and hottest sex bloggers are featured under one roof every month. Whether you’re looking for sex journalism, erotic writing, relationship advice or kinky discussions it’ll be here at Elust. Want to be included in Elust #107? Start with the rules, come back June 1st to submit something and subscribe to the RSS feed for updates!

~ This Month’s Top Three Posts ~

Orgasms Save Me From Myself

Charlie’s Bar

I’m Not Ready to Love My Body

~ Featured Post (Molly’s Picks) ~

Letters and Lonely Hearts

I Want to Curve and Ache

~Readers Choice from Sexbytes ~

Don’t fear the smear

*You really should consider adding your popular posts here too* Continue reading “Elust 106”

Don’t Move

“Don’t make a sound, and don’t move” said The Texan as he covered my mouth.  He had been fondling me; feeling my nipples stiffen underneath my tank top and hearing my breath start to beat staccato, he must have known that I was awake.  His hard cock pressed into my back, and I ground my ass back against it, making the smallest nodding motion with my head.  Spooned close to me, he slid his right hand down the back of my blue lace knickers and breathed heavily into my hair when he felt how gushingly wet I was.  He pushed my panties down with that hand and rubbed my juices around my vulva, then smeared the rest on his cock before sliding it through my thighs and along my labia, teasing me.  My body tensed; I longed to whimper, to beg, but all I could do was gyrate and dig my fingers into his leg, willing him to penetrate me.

My body quivering, I tightened my muscles and remained as still as I could on my side as he pushed the head of his cock past my opening, pulled it back out a bit to wet it, and drove back in, little by little, until I could feel the ridge of his foreskin riding along my anterior wall.  I pressed back against him and angled my arm back to hold onto his ass, and he thrust into me in subtle movements – enough for both of us to feel the electricity pass between us, but not enough to shake the bed with any discernible noise.  Certainly not with the gusto we were used to fucking with.  Afraid to roll forward onto his sleeping wife, I held my breath, bit my lip, gripped him with the intensity of a rock climber, and came silently in ripples of intense pleasure.  Not long after, he gushed into me, pulling my body tight against his, and bit my shoulder just the way I liked.  He pulled out, leaving a trail of his come along my ass, and pulled my panties up.  “I want you to sleep like this,” he whispered, and cupped my crotch with his hand.  His spunk squirted onto the inside of my knickers; it was so uncomfortable and SO arousing.

I lay there until I couldn’t stand the squishy feeling anymore; getting up to wipe myself, I disturbed his wife, who wanted us to move around so she could cuddle him.  He moved into the middle, and I took one side.  We were all still drunk from several bottles of wine, so falling back into a deep sleep was easy; I remained so for a few more hours, until I awoke to feel him masterfully stroking my thighs.  I turned over to kiss him and stroke his cock – long, deep kisses, long, slow strokes.  I desperately wanted him inside me again; I had never felt so insatiable.  I knew he was feeling the same when he put a finger to my lips.  This time, the expression in his eyes was all it took to tell me not to move, and I understood.  Without a word, I turned back over, and tracing a finger down my back, he yanked my panties down.  We started all over again.

Wicked Wednesday... a place to be wickedly sexy or sexily wicked

This had been sitting in my drafts waiting to be published for aaaaages; this week’s Wicked Wednesday prompt “Continue” seemed like a good fit for it.  Also… it’s my 300th post!  Woohoo!

The Misogyny Inherent in Abstinence-Only Education

Sex education in the United States is a clusterfuck; this is news to no one.  Each state creates its own guidelines, meaning that students in different states receive wildly different variations on sex ed – if they receive any at all.  For example, only thirteen states require their sex ed programs to be medically accurate, and five states dictate that homosexuality must be framed negatively if discussed at all.

Last July, the Department of Health and Human Services told organizations which receive five-year grants through the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program that their funding would be cut off this coming June – two years early.  Several of these organizations sued HHS in federal court in order to keep their grants, and many of them won their cases this spring.

While the FY 2018 budget bill maintained funding for the TPPP, HIV prevention programs, and PREP (the Personal Responsibility Education Program, which also gives grants to organizations providing comprehensive sex ed), it also increased grants for abstinence-only education programs.

There is a ton of research studying the efficacy of abstinence-based programs versus comprehensive sex ed programs; while I encourage you to do a deep dive into those numbers, that’s not what I want to focus on.  I wrote my master’s thesis on the impacts of abstinence-only education and would like to impart two things:

  • States that stress abstinence in their schools have higher teen pregnancy and STI transmission rates, and
  • The explicit and implicit messages to young people in abstinence-only curricula are incredibly harmful.

I’d like to expound on the second point.  These programs don’t just tell students not to have sex; they tell students that people who have sex before marriage are damaged.  For my thesis, I got my hands on the teaching materials for three different abstinence-only curricula*; the words risk, life-threatening, promiscuous, addictive, depression, guilt, and shame are used repeatedly throughout these texts to describe young people who have sex.  They describe sexually young women specifically as feeling cheap, used, empty, and full of self-loathing.  One says that abstinence means “freedom from guilt, disappointment, losing respect, and compromising values.”  The curricula that mention sexual harassment, coercion, and rape are chock-full of victim blaming; one even tells girls that “provocative dress is disrespectful to the man you’re with.”  One doesn’t mention sexual coercion at all.

They frame abstinence as a choice, but having sex as a lack of will power. Gender and orientation spectrums are never addressed.  There is no mention of divorce, adultery, or any family structure that’s non-nuclear (making several student populations invisible).  Don’t even get me started on gender roles: According to abstinence-only education, women are weak, emotional victims who need “hours of mental preparation” for sex, while men are irresponsible, predatory liars who “see intimacy as competition.”  The teacher’s guide for one of these programs directs the teacher to “ask a girl” to read the part of a rape victim and to “ask a guy” to read the part of a porn addict.  They tell young people that women need to be provided for and that male partners shouldn’t be criticized because men need to feel competent in order to feel loved.

These language choices are NOT a mistake; the funding guidelines for receiving Title V grant money for abstinence-only programs state that the materials must teach that “a mutually faithful monogamous relationship in the context of marriage is the expected standard of sexual activity” and that “sexual activity outside of the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical affects (italics mine).”

AO curricula also frame sex as something to be given and taken, which brings me to one of many reasons why comprehensive sexuality education is so important: Abstinence-only programs are incredibly misogynistic and lack any component regarding communicating about wants, needs, boundaries, and agency within relationships.  AO curricula reinforce a lot of the shit that members of misogynist movements believe – and that’s a big fucking deal.  A lot has been written about these movements in the past few weeks; what I’d like to contribute to that conversation is that abstinence-only education programs back them up by posing sex as transactional, by propping up binary, stereotypical, and dangerous gender roles, and by saying that women provoke men into predatory sexual behavior.  Detrimental messages about gender roles aren’t just propagated by the media and held up by people we know; some of them are directly taught in schools.

Congress funds AO programs at more than $100 million / year.

In order to survive, PREP and TPPP need a lot of public support, especially now; if you live in the United States and write or call your members of Congress on the regular, you might want to mention this the next time a budget bill comes up. If you don’t, please start.  If you are a parent, please, PLEASE tell your school board that you want your child to receive comprehensive sexual health education.  Not just STI and contraception information, but conversations about healthy relationships, gender, sexuality, and media critique.  It is absolutely imperative that young people have access to curricula that validate their families and lived experiences, that humanizes them, that gives them agency, and that gives them tools to critique the world around them and communicate with love, compassion, and clarity.

Want to know what kind of sex education is taught in your state?  You can find out on the SIECUS (Sexuality Information and Education Council of the US) website.

 

 

 

*DM or email me if you want the names of the curricula I read.

 

Up and Out

This is Sinful Sunday prompt week, and the wheels of fortune demanded that I shoot some underwear from below; I’d been waiting to take a photo of these panties, so it worked out!

Sinful Sunday

Trust

A few months ago, I wrote a piece on blindfolds for KOTW; when I talked to The Engineer about this, he mentioned that while he loves blindfolding me, he wasn’t really into being blindfolded.  He’s a bit claustrophobic, so I think sensory deprivation and bondage generally aren’t comfortable for him.  But then he said: “If you want to blindfold me, you can.  I trust you.”  My heart melted.

Blindfolded Propaganda Woman Girl Walking

Fast forward to his recent visit; I was giving him a long body massage next to the fire one night, and inspiration struck.  I asked him to turn over to his back; I grabbed my new furry blindfold and asked gently if I could put it on.  The atmosphere was relaxed – candles, soft music, wine, warm and loving hands.  I started out by touching his legs, arms, and stomach, and then moved onto his cock – hard as a rock – taking it alternately into my mouth as far as I could and then back into my hands, stroking it and running my tongue along its length.  I sidled my body up his oiled body so that I could kiss him.  Being kissed (especially a deep, sensual kiss) while blindfolded is a singular experience.  It feels so intimate and electric because the sense of touch is heightened.  All of the other senses are heightened.  An ecstatic whimper emerged from his throat, and it was a beautiful sound to behold.

Roused by my memories of Sex and Lucia (if you haven’t seen this movie, stop reading right now and go watch it), I wet a finger and traced it along his lips; I dipped one nipple between his parted lips, followed by the other, which he relished.  I raised myself so I could kneel over his face and gently lower my clit onto his waiting tongue; I’m sure the pressure of my knees against his ears and the resulting lack of sound added to his expanded tactile experience.  He lapped at my swollen vulva, sticky with webs of viscous juices, until I needed him inside of me.  I straddled his cock and slid him into my longing cunt.  Usually the first contact is the most exquisite; especially so in this case.  While riding him, I took off the blindfold and kissed him.  We ended up having some of the best sex we’ve ever had – I felt so deeply entwined with him and completely present in the moment; he told me later that he felt the same.

Sometimes experimentation goes awry; however, sometimes it opens us up to new and exhilarating feelings and experiences.  If you have a partner you deeply trust, try something new with them that you never thought you would like.  You may end up having a pretty fucking great night.