Saturday, 1 May 2010

No sex please, I'm apprehensive and navel gazing (and the view is bleugh)

In fact, if you're one of those people who believe that if you can't say something nice say nothing at all, close this window now. Don't say I didn't warn you.

I know that I want people to read my blog and be my online followers. I want them to comment on my posts and link to me so that this feels like real blogging. I want to read their - your! - opinions and (heh!) praise for my pithy commentary and honesty.

So I submitted The Ethical Slut post to e-Lust, an online compendium of sex blogs.  And now I'm wondering which would be worse: to be called a naive, selfish, mithering, self-pitying lay-about (which would be fair comment, believe me) or (what is more likely) to hear nothing at all. And writing it, I know with some certainty that it would be the latter.

Do all bad tempered people dislike themselves? There's a mean voice in my head that says every bit of ill humour, cowardice, pride, jealousy and selfish behaviour gets repaid in kind, resulting in a barren, joyless life. I don't mean like karma; it's much more mundane than that. Here's an example, Kate is a friend who I no longer talk to and although I might say it's because she lives on the other side of the city the truth is simply that I am jealous of her. We were at college together and now her career is going well and mine is faltering. I think that Kate was offered the job she got because, unlike me, she is pleasant, easygoing and inoffensive. I am not always offensive: I can be kind, witty, fun, thoughtful and generous but I also behave badly enough to have a rep. My wit can be cutting; I have very hard edges. People are often a bit wary of me.

Kate has a wide circle of friends and is in close contact with people she was friends with from her school days. If I'm honest, this was another point of tension in our friendship. I am often wary of very sociable people: the friends I choose tend to be slightly lonely, like me. I'm not threatened by them and don't have to be jealous if their social life is better than mine. For a minute it puzzles me that I have never experienced sexual jealousy in relationships before... and then I remember that I have always chosen people who I found unthreatening and who loved me more than I loved them. Ah.

Virgil and I are trying to mend things. I apologised the other day. I said, "I have realised that I have been using my anger and hurt feelings as a weapon against you, which was not right and I am sorry." I felt scared. I had remembered, in time I hope, that love is not unconditional. Virgil has been good and patient with my work woes, some of which are certainly self-inflicted, but my moping and inertia would try anyone's patience. The open relationship issue just gave me another excuse to wallow and mope and essentially to rub his nose in my bad mood.

In my 20s I had a depressed, under-employed boyfriend and he drove me crazy. While I worked for my finals, Patrick slouched despondently around our flat. He sat in a miasma of dope smoke and apathy, running up enormous telephone bills (in my name) on dial-up internet and dodgy premium rate phonecalls. When you live together you get the unedited versions of each other and you can fall out of love with someone for being like that. It would be justified. Virgil and I have not been living together very long but that's another story.

I am resolved to turn over a new leaf and get out of this horrible rut before I really fuck things up. Fortunately I now have a brand new pdf of The Ethical Slut to teach me how.


  1. I'm intoxicated by the lyrical way you write. It's both to the point and concise as well as mildly circulating, the way Hunter Thompson wrote. I hope you find it complimentary, as that's how it was intended.

    I too have wondered why certain articles get no comments at all, why some only get hatred and bile, and why the pithiest of things attracts attention. I resolve it's because the internet is fickle, and awful, and glorious.

    1. Amen to that, Cooper. Thanks for your comment. It's great to know someone's reading! I need to work out how to get people to comment... x RH