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01/27/2015

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Alana M

This hit really close to home, especially the sense that I may be rendered unlovable by my kinks and then unceremoniously abandoned for "safer" sexual terrains (mostly because it has happened more than once). In the meantime, their assumptions about me sexuality are used to haphazardly jam me into an unshared fantasy. I've referred to this often as me always being a plot device in someone else's story. These men unload their intimate secrets on you, learn from them, but ultimately see their learning experience as your primary purpose instead of acknowledging your second and third dimensions. They fail to see you as the feeling and craving protagonist of your own story and instead as a meaningful but disposable part of theirs. Anyway, end rant. Thanks for writing this.

anonymous

You are so lovable.

jackR

Ouch. Who doesn't ache to be seen? then instantly fear being seen through society's filter of shame of any sexuality? That sliver of existence is enough to paralyze most of us for a lifetime.
I think of the projected meanings we all have. Meanings which are usually crafted of that societal shaming of sexuality.
Our biggest challenge is redefinition of the meanings of our identities, appetites, behaviors and relationships. Defined through love and not fear. Defined through respect. Defined with the precious gift of our human experiences.
I personally ache to be seen. To live the challenge of personal truth. be the change you wish to see

Rebecka Eggers

What a thoughtful piece. I applaud your willingness to put this all out in the open. I am deeply sorry for your loss. I am even more sorry that this loss evokes in you a sense of shame and wrongness as neither belong to you. All I can say is that what makes you a whore, a slut, a disposable piece of meat...to those men you describe makes you a prize jewel to me and a WHORE. Why should the critics get to own that word? For me a WHORE is a woman possessed of her own desire. Put her together with the VIRGIN and you have a woman possessed of her desire and in full possession of herself and her identity. Finally, I agree with your friend. I am sorry your lover could not meet you there. I applaud your willingness to face your dream. Let me know how I can support you.

Maiyah

Thank you for revealing so much about your being.

In a way I see this as a phoenix moment for you, (I suspect you have a fascinating placement of Pluto and Venus in your chart), so very very apropos that this occurs on your natal day.

Glad the day that you were born, for as you continue to be truthful, you will catalyze liberation for all other beings.

<3

Danie

I feel like this is a literal representation of my life as well as a metaphor for basically everything in it.

Thank you, for your words. They make me feel more seen. I feel you. You are seen as well.

And this...

If you refuse to accept your desires you have three options: you can repress yourselves and hide from your partners until you suffocate from misery, or you can allow yourselves to be seen and be rejected which will add to your shame, or you can allow yourselves to be seen and be accepted, which strangely is even worse, because your partner's acceptance of your desires will go to war with your shame around them.

Just about brought me to tears.

God I hope I can sort through all this shit one day and just be me and happy.

FLH

Arden,

I hope you can be who you want to be without getting dragged down by his decision to leave you or similar actions from other people. It is hard. About the idea of shame: I have never understood why we should be feeling shame for somebody else's decisions, statements, thoughts or actions. Isn't shame supposed to show us when we collide with our values? Did you do that? Doesn't seem so from your text. Did he? Possibly, but you can't know for sure and if he did, he will have to deal with the consequences (secrets, unhappy family?). Hope you manage to stay strong. I'm sure many more will be rooting for you and wish you the best.

Eric

Ms. Leigh,

I'm so sorry you're going through this, particularly on your birthday. I only know a small part of your story, but you certainly should not be ashamed or think of yourself as unlovable!

Lori F

I love that you shared so openly your thoughts and feelings. It is one thing to fear being unlovable and quite another to express it in such an open forum like this. You are so brave!! I want to assure you that you ARE loveable, regardless of your sexual kinkiness. It literally has no connection. Just by virtue of being alive and being human, you are loveable! As a licensed counselor, I'd also encourage you to consider that the reason these relationships haven't worked in the past might also be unconnected to your sexual preferences. It's easy to say this relationship broke up because I was being who I am in bed and I won't give that up. Maybe there is something deeper going on that is pushing these people away which has little or nothing to do with your sexuality. I know many people who have ended relationships, ones where the sex was better than any they'd had before, because the compatibility wasn't there, values weren't the same, or life goals weren't matched up. Maybe, there is even a part of you that is choosing partners who will ultimately push you away so YOU don't have to. To even unwittingly re-prove to yourself that you are in fact, unlovable (which is untrue). I know that sounds like a lot of psychobabble, and please ignore me altogether if you think I'm wrong, but I'd encourage you to examine your inner piece of this, rather than scapegoating your choices in bed. You are a beautiful soul deserving of love. I know you will keep doing the work to get there. Peace and love to you my dear

Gray

I am so sorry. Wish I could give you a hug right now. Or erase some memories. Or something.

You are a warrior on the front lines of a very particular and very old culture war, and that means it's going to suck. A lot. And the only thing you have to console yourself is the very cold comfort of "I am living my dream."

It's not much. Especially now. I think we're just going to cancel birthdays for you from here on out, by the way. But thanks to your living your dream, I've been able to live more of mine, and I know that goes for others.

So thank you for taking these wounds as part of fighting this war. It may not be valued by all, or even by those who should value it the most...but it is valued by me.

Love you, my friend.

Sarah

Him leaving isn't about you being unloveable, it's more likely to be that he got an enormous amount out of the full exploration of everything you did together and everything you were together, but that ultimately, he wanted something different. It is not that you are not loveable, it is that you are not the right person for him. In life every choice closes off other choices. He chose a different path. It's not about you, it's about him and his life and his future. And don't assume that he won't be happy with Ms Vanilla Conservative. He may well be very happy with her and never miss kink. Or he and she may explore aspects of it together, in a different way, but a way that is about the two of them. None of this is in any way a reflection of any lack of value or lovableness in you. It really isn't.

Arden Leigh

Sarah,

That may be all well and good but I'm tired of being everyone's healing plot device manic pixie dream geisha sacred delphic oracle priestess-whore. I'm tired of my relationships ending with my men being healed and myself feeling damaged. Enough. I have fucking interiority. If you wanna learn from me without some sort of loyalty and co-regulation and responsibility to the relationship, you can hire me as a coach.

Aimee

Arden, once again, everything you have written here resonates on a different frequency than anything else out there. I am still working toward putting myself out there, so I have no authority from which to speak.

But you know what has gotten me here and has kept me going? Something you said to me almost two years ago at the Seven Bar & Grill. You told me that just by virtue of the fact that I exist, I am asking these questions, and I am willing to give this much to a partner, means there have to be others out there looking for me. Not to be all "there's someone out there for you honey just wait," but that we can't be the only ones wanting something true and working towards it every day.

I only hope that we, myself included, are not seeking this communion only to destroy it once and for all. It's like Audre Lorde writes about "your itch to destroy the indestructible part of yourself." I've seen that happen, and it sounds like you have too.

But because you exist, I know that there are others who are strong enough to live this truth, and it's time for all of us to find each other. Like you said, we're tired of being "everyone's healing plot device...oracle priestess-whore," and "it's 2015, and this is fucking bullshit." Whatever it takes, an angels-and-demons meetup, a sexy cake bake-off, whatever, we're doing this.

anonymous coward

i am sorry for your breakup. i listened a podcast you were on and stumbled from there to your twitter with the letter about your dads abuse. it hit me quite hard. then i came here... ouch, a breakup... i felt bad for you reading your blog post about your breakup. i hope you feel better soon and wanted to say something to make you feel better. i am sure some day you will some day meet someone who is kind and honest and deserves you because you seem like a nice person whose heart is in the right place. take care and good luck.

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