I've never really been a person to fit into the status quo. I've never cared to look a certain way, or say a certain thing to fit in. Though of course I have anxiety around people liking me, and for a while convinced myself everyone hated me no matter what I did, I've always been true to the person that I am. At least in some way. I've always been considered 'weird', which I've never had a problem with, though I don't know if that's the right description, it's more that I live outside the norm.
I remember in high school I made a friend (what?!) and for the first couple weeks we ate lunch together every day. She wanted to join cheerleading so I also tried out with her. We were on the field cheerleading team together, but after she made the team she completely changed everything about her. All of a sudden she would come to school with pin straight hair every day, when she had a head of beautiful, natural curls. I never saw her again without make-up. I stayed the same as I was, though I did get a perm (I think this was me again trying to be different, and not for any form of 'beauty' standards but just to be like 'here's something I did'). I wasn't considered 'pretty' for a girl, so she stopped being friends with me.
I was close friends with a guy in my band class. We were both weird. I can't remember what instrument he played. Our relationship was completely platonic, we had fun joking together. One day I ran into him in the hallway and he pushed me against the wall and told me never to talk to him again. He started wearing Holister and American Eagle shirts. The funny thing about that now is he was the brother of my best friend and the son of my music teacher. Yet, I doubt he even remembers ever being friends with me. Part of me knows both of my former friends left because they were envious how I could just be who I was without any real concern. I never decided 'oh hey people don't like me so I need to change', even if I had decided 'people don't like me'.
For a very long time I didn't date because I had convinced myself no one would want to be seen with me, so I told myself it was because I was too busy. I hoped that I might find someone with a free spirit who would see past my hesitation to date and want to talk for hours with each other about all things life and love. But because I had this wall up I had zero interest presented towards me, and honestly I think maybe I was too intimidating for anyone to approach me that way. I've been told that I'm 'too much' way too often to feel like there's a point in me imposing myself in someone's life.
I'm afraid I feel differently than a lot of people, and then I'm afraid maybe I'm just making that up. I live a double life inside my brain. One side is allowing me to be who I am while the other is telling me maybe I have always been 'trying' to be this person, so I end up falling in a spiral of not knowing exactly what is real. It's suffocating to an extent. I had a conversation with my therapist last week about how I don't know if my existence of being poly is just me also trying to be different. Though I know the logical part of my brain feels so much freedom that I've never felt when thinking about monogamy. It's a deep rooted imposter syndrome embedded in my subconscious, and i'm unable to escape it. I don't know what part of me is true.
When I think of the person I am with a partner vs the person I am at work vs the person I am around my friends, or when I'm exhausted or feeling ecstatic, to me they're all so different. I think the surface of that just means I'm a multifaceted person, but I've been living in this brain for so long I don't know what's authentic, and what's coloured over my skin as a camouflage, especially in the love department. I stayed away from it for so long that I haven't had a chance to be who I really am and end up in a position of filling a spot that's been engrained in me by fictional entertainment. So what if one day I wake up and start acting how I feel is truly me and someone says 'you're a completely different person, I don't know you any more' and my only answer is 'this has always been me'. I'm afraid of people not wanting whatever that is, even if maybe I've always been me...
Is this post fucking with your brain? I think these late night shifts are messing with my brain a bit. But whatever. I now have a blackout curtain and new pillows, so I sleep whenever. I am who I am, even if grammatically this post is probably a nightmare. Have I lost you yet?
I hate how I hate myself. I don't think I deserve it. I don't deserve this hate. I don't deserve to feel it towards myself or on myself. But I can't help it. The main concern I have is that I'm so self-aware of everything it ends up being a burden. I could live the ignorant life of not understanding where the pain comes from and just take it day by day, but knowing the resource makes it ever more persistent to tear me apart from the inside slowly as my thoughts spiral. I try to look at myself how my friends see me. Most of the time that works. It allows me to take a beat and think 'hey, these really cool people you admire love you very much', but then the anxiety takes over and I become two separate people talking at each other.
Anxiety: Right, but you know they only see what you show them, if they saw the real you, if you were an honest person and showed them who you REALLY were, they wouldn't be friends with you.
Self-aware brain: I am honest. I am the most honest.
Anxiety: Being honest about action isn't the same as being honest about emotion. You've never been honest with your own emotions for people, you don't know how to be and you'll never be able to.
Spiral, spiral, spiral.
I've been writing this blog for seven days, telling myself 'wow, Holly, you're so open and honest about your experiences, you're such a brilliant creative artist because you're allowing people to see the real you while also living your life the way that works best for you'. But I don't know if that's true. When anxiety comes out to play, reality is lost.
Anxiety: Did you ever realize that the things that you do with your life are all based on some idea that it's not the 'norm' and maybe you're just trying to be outside the box to be unique, to be remembered. The way you actually feel isn't true to how you act. Are you only polyamorous because it's different? Do you even like women when you parade around saying you do but haven't really had any experience that probably wasn't forced? You say you don't believe in monogamy, but is it only because you know deep down there is no possible way a single person could love you the way you want to be loved? Or is it because you're so selfish, and attention seeking you need EVERYONE to love you without giving everything back.
Maybe you're right. I answer defeated.
Biking home after a night out with friends, hosting karaoke at a bar, the streets are quiet at 2:30 in the morning. Monday fast approaching as all the 9 to 5ers hop in their late night uber knowing they'll regret this in five hours when the alarm clock goes off. While I activate my killer hamstrings as the street leans slightly upwards home the entire journey my breath starts to quicken. What the fuck am I doing? I have tried so hard to love myself. I think I've been able to achieve it. But then these bad thoughts take over and it's like all that work was for nothing. I have to take deep breaths as I tell myself, just one more block, you can make it one more block, until it gets to a point my vision starts to blur and I dry heave. One more block, there's no cars on the way just push through. Push through, yeah thanks so much theatre school for enabling that bad habit. Finally arriving in my bed room with my cat looking at me and I collapse on my bed. Panic pills at the ready. What the fuck.
It's the thoughts of 'am I just fooling myself' that run rapid. Am I still in love with my ex, you know, the one that I wrote and entire one person show about and still won't acknowledge my existence. Is that just fucking crazy. That I haven't felt those feelings since him makes me want to vomit. Meanwhile I'm trying to be civil around the other people I've dated who just want to be friends and thinking 'I need to hold onto this, even if it's not giving me anything aside from the validation that I'm not a terrible person to date... I'm not... I'm...' And I stare at my phone, I stare hoping to get that validation elsewhere and of course it's not going to come Holly, it's 3 in the morning and you've estranged yourself from needing people for 'protection'. I wonder if there's a market for an app for anxious people in crisis. Where you sign in when you need someone to acknowledge your existence. At least that's what I need when I'm having an anxiety attack. I find I get so stuck in reaching out, I can openly post about it on twitter, but I can't send a message specifically to anyone. The reason being is that I wouldn't want to burden someone unless they felt they were in a mentally healthy place to help. If I shoot someone a private message it feels so much more of a let down if I don't hear from them, or if they respond in a way that is dismissive. I want to be able to alert people I love to the problem and have the ones that are able to help reach out to me. This app would be that. You'd have all your friends on a system they could press a button to log into that says 'hi, please reach out', and then you could choose to help if you're in a good enough state of mind. Or maybe that's the 3 am brain talking. Who knows. Who knows.
Who knows if I'll keep writing this blog. I secretly gave myself the challenge to write one every day for a week, to see if I could do it. I think if I were to keep going it would be a once or twice a week kind of thing, but I also feel as though I have nothing to say. That these words on this page are but stagnant and yawn inducing (did you yawn because of boredom or because I said yawn. Yawn.). I don't know what I'm doing, with the people in my life, the relationships I've fostered, if it's all just an act that I'm putting on where only my deep, deep sub-conscious knows the truth, or I'm really this person I've created that other people love and adore. Trying to find the answer is crazy making. So instead I say adieu until I write again. Thank you for riding the Hools Brain Train with me. I hope entertainment was at least part of the journey you took.
I'm not usually a 'self-help' kind of girl. Sure, I've read 'How to Win Friends and Influence People' because, well... I didn't have friends. I have friends now, but I don't think it was because of that book... or was it... THE POWER OF WORDS! I think a lot of those kinds of books are useful to some, I use therapy for my learning. I've never actually read any relationship self-help 'men are from mars' shit. I suppose reading it would be more of an experiment, to see what some literary individual may have to say about things I don't know.
I recently listened to a podcast, which I guess in it's own way is a 'self-help' style depending on what you're listening to. My interests vary between multiple topics. I love Reply-All for the hosts and the facts that my brain wouldn't generally read into what they talk about. I like Risk because the stories are all so different and mostly engaging, but I never know what I'm going to hear. I enjoy Girls Gotta Eat, because it's nice to hear about two sexually positive females talk openly about their sex lives. Just to name a few. The latter of the three happened to talk about love languages.
This was a phrase I was familiar with but not one I had read into. I heard the idea of how we express love can be different than how we need love and how others need it, blah-blah-blah. A theory of compatibility. I tend to sprinkle my admiration across the board and cover my bases in most areas of appreciation. For me, I desperately need someone to tell me how important I am in their life. Words of affirmation are very clearly in my core. I have suffocated from past lovers to a point I reached out to an old lover just because I knew at least they would say I'm pretty and I wasn't getting it from the current one. I hated myself for it and couldn't really pinpoint the reason why. Instead of something to get mad about, it's something to acknowledge going forward.
With that said, I think it's very important to know how each person in your life ticks, romantic or not. As much as I need words of affirmation, I'm TERRIBLE at giving them. I can take compliments to a point, but then get in a sort of obligatory state of exchanging courtesies that make my words feel false. I don't know how to start a sentence of positive endorsement, even if in my being I feel very grateful for said person. I could not date myself because of it. I tend to show my love through gifts because it's a way to say 'I was thinking about you and listening to what you enjoy', but it's also a lot of people's lowest ranked language.
Being poly, the love languages help me to know how to cherish each partner differently. It also has really helped with my anxiety. If I'm not getting what I need I'm better at knowing 'okay so when I don't hear from you for twelve hours I kind of freak out, and I don't mean you need to message me every day to tell me I'm alive kind of thing, so I need you just to give me a 'hey I'm gonna be gone for the next two days, I'll message you when I'm back' kind of thing' (though I really appreciate when I hear from people every day, I'm not going to INSIST it on someone). I'm able to say to myself 'okay, so he didn't ask you how you are, that doesn't mean he hates you, you just need to tell him' and knowing it's different for each relationship I embark towards.
Knowing that someone needs love in a certain way allows me to act accordingly, and by that I don't mean I have to force it, I just need to be aware. I think the languages are within us. Physical touch is not one that I need a lot of to feel loved, but I know it's a main one for some people. I'm very good at sharing that need with others.
What I do know is listening to this podcast made my eyes open on previous people I've dated who didn't act with a single one, and I was entirely complacent without any form of adoration. The fact that I was being shown zero love, or worse, 'convenient' love, and not realizing it because I'm so very good at accommodating other people. It's one of those 'when you look back and you see everything much clearer' kind of things. Oh my silly like self, constantly disrespecting myself by allowing others to not respect me and thinking it was okay...
I don't think the idea of love languages means everyone needs to know and live by this. Not at all. My entire blog is based on my own experiences, and in sharing it I only hope for someone to be like 'hey yeah actually that works for me'. But for those interested my own, in order, are: Words, Acts of Service, Quality Time, Touch, Gifts. Though no one asked, what am I even writing for, maybe I'm running out of ideas.
That's how I've been defined by many who've held my heart with rough claws digging deep, blood dripping down their fingers while they watch monotonous. I'm complicated, when they're all looking for something 'easy', as if looking for a 'relationship' should be 'easy'. That's where I draw a blank. Any real relationship takes time and effort, if there is none given then is it real? And I say relationship in the broadest way. My strongest relationship is with my best friend, both of us have spent endless hours on each other. Has it always been easy? No. But we care deeply and we know it's worth it. So for those who've said to me 'I just need my relationships to be easy' I scoff.
Feelings are confusing and exhausting, but are a teeter-totter. You can't have the brilliant overwhelming feeling of love and wonder that fills your heart to explosion without having the dragging of the weight of the world through a gallon worth of mud. I'm grateful for my heart, even though many times I wish I could claw it out. I care deeply for people, a state that was in no way true about four years ago. When I started taking care of myself mentally I had so much more space in my brain for other people. I'm glad I can care for other people in this way, as it is something that some people will never even try to accomplish. And because of such, I have so much room in my heart I couldn't imagine forcing one person to have all of it.
My relationships are all unique. I would say I 'get' certain things out of certain people but that sounds shady, as if I'm collecting what I can get from someone and using them for that purpose. This isn't true. It's more that each person I have a deep relationship with gives me things I can't have elsewhere. I would never want to expect things from people, but I do have a degree of understanding in relationships that offer things others don't. For instance I would never expect a partner to be the kind of weird I am with my best friend. Her relationship with me is so important and I wouldn't give that up to have someone try to take that place when I know they could not. My cat is also a big part of my life, though it may sound ridiculous on paper, the truth of the statement is I wouldn't want a partner to expect me to her up for their well-being (sorry to those deathly allergic, it's just not going to work between us).
Being Poly, and recently open to many different kinds of people currently in a romantic and intimate way, allows me to feel so much more gratitude for the things I am given from each person. One partner who validates and really challenges me intellectually in particular with board games, while another may not be that big into games, so I won't detract from our relationship by expecting it. I would like to think the same for if I were to date someone super into sports. I would be like 'yeah go celebrate, just not with me'. We all have different people to fill our holes (and I don't mean in that way!).
I think that's why monogamy really freaks me out. The idea that you would either expect your partner to want all the same things as you, or you would compromise and not have your own needs met doesn't fit with me as a person. I'm not saying I'm a selfish asshole (though I can be at times, we are all human), I'm saying that it would be hard for me to date someone who is all the things I need. I have high standards and they shouldn't have to be met by one person.
Cat lover, board gamer, music enthusiast, coffee snob, intellectually stimulating, a people person with a community of friends, doesn't own a dog, or want kids, is open to impulsive adventure while also understanding my obsession to plan, just to name a few. So no, please don't try to fit into all those, and more, that wouldn't be fair of me to put on anyone. I ask for little, but mostly I just want someone who respects me, I have other people in my life for the rest.
Though I'm not obsessed over my physical appearance any more than I was when I was being told I was unattractive, I'm not as terrible to myself about it. From the moment I was allowed to dress myself I didn't ever care if something matched. I was drawn to bright colours and funky patterns that made my style very unique. So unique it was dubbed I had 'zero-sense-of-fashion' during a terrible made up game in college by the bitchest girl who forced everyone to play. Now I get comments daily on how cool my clothes are, I may have garnished some sense of a style, but it's always been mine.
I've never been a make up girl. I wear it for the purpose of auditions or work. I've recently thrown it on at times that I end up going out to meet someone because I will admit that sometimes it does make me feel pretty. Though that statement makes me shudder, I realize it's not for the purpose of 'picking-up' or drawing in the cute guy at the bar. It gives me confidence in a weird way. But I'm not going to use that as a way to rant about societies expectations and the make-up industry, because that's another thing on it's own.
I didn't have a single person attracted to me in high school, and really I didn't care because I was so focused on school, and had no sense of identity. Then I went to college and I was among mostly gay men and didn't know I was interested in any other gender, plus I was also so focused on school and had no sense of identity. When I moved to Toronto I just assumed any man that approached me only wanted to have sex, and I really didn't know what I wanted, but I was still a virgin and was too stressed to think of any other reason any person would talk to me. I became very guarded, and impossible to date.
I've been told I'm not pretty enough to be an actor, that my photo's make me look gorgeous and it's deceiving when you meet me in person, that I couldn't sing a specific song from a show because I wasn't attractive enough to sing it. All these micro-aggressions had me believe that there was no way anyone could be attracted to me, and due to my sexuality I was afraid of anyone having sexual attraction to me because I just didn't know what that meant. I also had my own traumatic experiences in regards to men being sexually attracted to me that left me feeling empty because of it. I stayed away from dating for a long time, and I honestly didn't think anyone would find me attractive for any other reason. I was stuck hanging around a beautiful girl who got everything she asked for because of her looks, and it skewed my perception of any interaction with people. I felt I was in some sort of museum at all times, eyes looking me up and down to judge whether I was worth talking to, good looking enough to fuck. I've been in some dark places because of it, and I'm glad to have worked through it mostly. I mean, I still see photo's of my siblings and consider myself the big, ugly one... but my family relationships are complicated so let's not get into that.
Being Poly has helped me not be so concerned about a material version of attraction, though I'm sure some people have partners that are more just a sexual thing than others, I don't know, that's not how my brain works. But for me, I feel like any one that I've been truly involved with has been because I am an attractive person as a whole. It's also how I pick partners, mostly. Though I have briefly mentioned sleeping with people for other reasons than who they are, mostly I don't just fuck around unless I value the person in a personal way. I feel like now, those who want to date me do it because they are interested in who I am, and not just what I look like, even if it's not always been like that. I've gotten better at sussing people out. It makes me feel more confident than a slim fit top and a few brushes of mascara on my eyelashes. I feel massively adored in respect to who I am, and who I am has always made more logical sense than any sort of physical attraction.
Wow, I feel like I'm just rambling and making no sense. Basically I'm saying that dating multiple people allows me to feel a stronger connection than something just based on the outside appearance. But I don't know, do I know anything really?
It's interesting when I explain the labels of my identity to someone new. I've always been one that's into words, without them being a hard fact. Sure, I identify this way because it's easier to get a sense of who I am, what I'm looking for, but it's not a cut and dry look at my cookie cut persona. Plus when I just say 'queer' people get all up in arms, I mean conservative people do... but fuck that shit, am I right?! Regardless, I prefer to state the general terms, which garnish questions from intellectual people, whereas those more dim brained won't press on further. It allows me to weed out the WEAK! I'm obviously (mostly) kidding.
I say I'm romantically attracted to everyone (pan-romantic) and sexually attracted to no one (asexual), as if that's not enough to make someone's head spin. Let's start out with the idea that attraction comes in many forms. Consider this for a second, you can look at a beautiful painting and be stunned by its beauty, but you don't want to fuck it or date it, I mean, I'm not judging if you do, to each their own. I can still appreciate someone aesthetically. But I'm mostly attracted to the person they are. Without it being a be-all-end-all we are intertwined as our souls become one, kind of thing. Confused yet?
I remember someone I was dating once said 'someone needs to 'queer-eye' me', meaning, in his own words, he was not an approachable person in any way. He had quite low self-esteem and frequently was commenting on how me having sex with him meant more than anyone else because he knew it meant that I liked him for him, and not his exterior. All things wrong with our relationship aside, I was angry at his assumption of my sexuality by saying 'well you couldn't queer-eye me because you don't see people as attractive'. This sat with me, and I even tried to explain he was wrong, I got severe backlash from him. Some people will never really get it. Another person I was dating knew I was asexual but never asked a single follow up question because, well, I had sex with him so why did it matter how I was attracted to him, if at all. There comes a point where you just stop trying to explain it and accept that it doesn't matter what you say. Dear lord, reading that statement its fricking depressing, believe me when I say I'M FINE. Well, mostly.
I need to express it in black and white: 'I AM ATTRACTED TO PEOPLE'. There are asexuals who are also aromantic, which is why for a while after discovering my sexuality I didn't actually identify as asexual because I thought that meant I didn't feel attraction in any way, and had expressed attraction in the past, just not sexually. I am attracted to so many things about people. So many facets of a person make me engage in them as a person, whether or not they want to engage with me in any way. I can be completely enveloped by an individual, without the need to jump their bones. I'm mostly attracted to all my friends, in a non-romantic way, so no, just because we're friends and I'm asexual, it doesn't mean I want to date you.
AND, then we bring in the label of polyamory. Just because I'm poly and not sexually attracted to anyone but still want to be in a relationship, it does not mean I just want to date anyone. Sure, have I fucked people that I've had 0 attraction to regardless of romantic or not, sure, I'm human, we all hate ourselves sometimes, we all end up using sex for various reasons. Do I think I'm a garbage human being because of these choices and am partially afraid I made some big impact on someone's life that they'll never get over and I'm a big contributor to the reason that they'll never feel whole. I mean, mostly no, but also sometimes I like to think I'm the villain of someone else's story, and not just bar patron #12. I think that's why I laugh when people say 'you're asexual, but how do you have sex', because I think 'come on, you've had sex with people you're not sexually attracted to before, right?' Though, I'm sure not true for everyone, it's vaguely true for most in some way or another.
So yes, my labels are an oxymoron. My attraction to everyone, without being sexual, and the state of being in multiple partnerships is confusing. But that's me, and that makes sense for me, for the most part, or at least for now.
You do you, bro, let me do me... or... whatever.
I commit to things, almost in a way that is probably a bit too much. When I say I'm going to do something I dive into it and give myself the time to make it happen. I've driven people away because of it, I've ruined friendships with my expectations that they'll deliver the same promise. I've broken my own heart way too many times because of how tainted the experience was for someone else involved. I don't think I ask for much, but I suppose it's more than some people can give.
My main grievance with artists are those who are like 'yeah sure I'm an artist' but only wait around for opportunities to be given to them. I haven't stopped giving myself to the art. The first summer break from college I created my own theatre company and directed/produced a kick-ass two act musical about women in my home town. When I graduated I went back to do another musical and raised money for a child in my home town with leukaemia, because I also feel like art can become such a masterbatory device, which is not the reason I create it. I don't go on stage in hopes that someone sees me, and only me, fuck the ENTIRE team of people. That breaks my heart a little. But for many people I know who only do art for that purpose I can understand the lack of commitment. Fame is such a limited resource, when it's not given when expected the heart can suffocate without another reason to perform.
But this isn't about my desire to smack all those hot-headed, self absorbed, jack-offs... wow, that was super aggressive, I'm sorry, sometimes my passion for art over looks my understanding that people have their own reasons for things and I shouldn't judge them. ANYWAY, this is about my ability to commit. I think a lot of people have a difficult time really understanding what polyamory means. It's hard work. But if it's something you want, if it's something you can find another person to make it work with, then it's achievable. Yet it's so easily confused with 'well I don't want to COMMIT to a relationship, so let's just be open'. This is totally fine. As mentioned, everyone has their own reasons for things. My main grievance is when that becomes the bare minimum for 'polyamory'. Not being able to commit isn't a reason to be polyamorous. Oh, I'm sorry, you're too afraid of being alone, but you don't want to put in time to the person you're being intimate (and/or ) romantic (and/or) sexual with, maybe you shouldn't fuck with people's emotions like that. HOLLY YOU'RE DOING IT AGAIN, LETTING YOUR EMOTIONS TAKE OVER. It's fine. I'm fine. It's fine.
I believe a lot of the lack of commitment to saying 'I just want a casual thing' is more about people not being self-aware as to why. Recently I was dating someone who ended up saying 'I just don't have time for you' and it was the most honest thing he said since we started dating. Before that point I'd spent two months driving myself insane as to trying to figure out why he just didn't want to spend time around me. What's wrong with me, I'd anxiously spiral. Him being completely honest about the reason instead of the 'well I just don't want anything serious'. I respected myself enough to say 'then I can't keep doing this' because I was committed regardless of it being casual or not. I am the prime example of commitment. I will drop everything for a person because they need someone to talk to. I will think about the people I'm dating constantly, and have to aggressively tell myself to 'stop, it's fine if they aren't texting you right now, it doesn't mean they hate you'. And that's my fault. For me I'm able to do that with all my relationships. I understand that most people have a hard enough time doing that just for themselves.
When my partner is sick I'll aggressively try to take care of them, because I want them to feel better, because I know what I want when I'm sick but I'm too independent to ask. I jump into new people quickly because that's who I am, I don't hold back and I'm way too honest. I've been told I'm too much and that's soften my intensity a bit. Personally I could text or talk with someone all day, but I also understand people have jobs/a life. Personally I think polyamory works nicely for me because then someone doesn't have to deal with the massive amount of a person that I embody, though that comes from the self-deprecating part of my brain that I've been able to quiet, but still exists.
Commitment isn't the reason I'm poly. Nor do I believe it should ever be confused with people who can't commit. I could go on about how angry it makes me. I know so many dudes who say 'look I just can't commit to you right now so is it cool if we date other people while still doing whatever...'. Unless you are just two people fucking, that's alright for you. I'm asexual so that's never what I am looking for. Though I'm not going to say I haven't fucked a few people I had no eggs in the basket with. Sometimes a girl's just gotta find someone to fill the emptiness inside that comes from her invisibility complex, or is that just me?? When someone wants to date other people because they just don't want to commit to someone that comes down to more of a bare bones look on the matter. Either you're monogamous and you're waiting for the 'right' person to come along, but in the meantime, hey you're alright and don't annoy me so let's just keep this thing going, or you're too chickenshit to be like 'I don't want to date you'. I understand that's not an easy conversation to have. But if you're not mature enough to have those conversations then you don't deserve the privilege to be intimate with someone.
I also want to stress what I mean by commitment. I don't mean 'hey we're all in it together now you are mine and I am yours let's get married and be each other's person' commitment. JESUS FUCKING CHRIST PEOPLE. I mean how about we respect each other as people. How about you just respond to my messages and make a bit of time for me one-on-one that's not just a pity fuck? Too much... Well yeah...
That's just me, I'm intense, feel free to tell me your own thoughts on the matter. I'm also very open to hearing other people's opinion that sway mine.
I've softly identified as Poly for about a year, though I've never subscribed to the concept of monogamy. The immediate shut off my brain does around the words 'I want to be exclusive' is justly personified by my complete cut off of future relations with certain people I've dated who've made the bold move to suggest something that's mostly 'normalized' in our society. It has never sat well with me. The thought of being tied down by one person who says 'she's mine' is suffocating that even the thought of it as I type it out makes me want to vomit. With that said, I get that monogamy works for people, well... I get it in a way that most people 'get' me being asexaul by agreeing to allow me to identify that way, though they'll never really understand. So sure, do I look at monogamous couples daily and want to throw myself over a brick wall? Sure. But also, to each their own, we're all allowed to live our own lives. Which is why I'll stay in my lane, you stay in yours.
Most recently I've found myself inside an active poly-cube. I don't know, is that a term, I don't know, I'm new to this, hello my name is Hools and I might be a fool, but I'm willing to learn. With this new relationship budding I can actually feel a sense of respect that I've never felt from previous partners. In a way that is actually blowing my mind as to how much bullshit I put up with in romantic entanglements just because I didn't feel like I deserved respect. I spent the early years of my life so engrained in my career that even looking at another person didn't cross my mind, and with that have been very juvenile in my approach to relationships. Like a 13 year old swooning over the boy with the Justin Beiber shag, circa 2010, I fell for a child in a 24 year old's body, and let him completely control the situation until part of my more intellectual brain went.... hmmm maybe... maybe this isn't okay...? I didn't realize I could date someone who actually wanted to be around me... and from there I made slow steps to improvements.
Without getting into the logistics of my previous entanglements, because I don't feel like throwing anyone under the bus, I will mostly say it's been eye opening to find myself involved with people who take time in their life for me. I believed that that was a privilege, that any attention I got from someone I was dating was a bonus, when now I realize that's just common fucking decency. In the same breath I am overly respectful towards any relationship in my life. And I'm talking about all of them, platonic, sexual, romantic, etc, since we as a general society have grown to believe there aren't separation between the many facets of any relationship. I care deeply for the people I want to care deeply for. I've gotten involved with way too many people who've taken advantage of my 100% commitment to them because, alas, I like to see the good in people, opps. But, have since really worked, hard, on what I'm getting out of all my relationships. I have really deep friendships with people. Ones that I know are strong regardless of how often I see someone, but ones that if I called them at 4 am and they were awake, or woken up by their ringer, would hands down Uber to sit beside me if I needed them to. With that statement actually ringing true at times. I don't know if you remember when I called you while having a panic attack in the park and you showed up 20 minutes later just to give me a hug, but that's the kind of friendships I emblazon. But with that said, I've given myself the lowest form of respect in regards to anything sexual/intimate/romantic because it took me 25 years before I had someone look me in the eye and express any sort of interest. I was blinded.
Growing up I was told constantly that I was weird. I believed no one could love me in a romantic way because there was just something wrong with me. Of course later discovering the source of my inability to feel sexual attraction, when not knowing what it was because well... sex education... am I right?! From discovering my sexuality and trying to date within it I believed maybe I just wasn't made to feel attraction in any way, until that happened with someone who didn't know who I was, which was another hurdle to jump over. Fast forward to the first person I dated that I had feelings for and I thought they felt the same.... AND that's my one woman show (rave reviewed, btw, I'm awesome.). So, back on the topic of Polyamory. Which is what this blog is intended for.
I was talking with my therapist yesterday who asked 'so what is it about polyamory that makes sense for you', and I found myself struggling to find the words. I've seen so many awful monogamous relationships from my childhood that it became the foundation of what any romantic/sexual relationship is. Knowing that I have become afraid of monogamy in the sense of 'owning' someone. The idea that if I'm out with a partner while flirting with a stranger and having my partner scold me for it makes me feel ill. I'm an individual and VERY independent. It's also the reason I didn't date for so long, people are intimidated by my ability to live. I don't need someone to fill holes (in all ways considered, dirty joke, score Holly, you got 'em intrigued now). I don't need someone to show off to the world, or for them to show me off. I don't need the sense that I only exist in the presence of someone who will tell people I exist. Do I still have a difficulty to escape the idea that I'm not invisible? Well, yeah, but that's a different blog post, we'll get there.
Anyway, this blog is intended for my own personal discovery as well as a way to share community. I'm slowly feeling more and more validated, which is allowing my creative brain a lot more space to breath. So for now, I'll keep sharing. Hope this is... something... Everything is something...
Holly (Hools) Wyder is a creative monster. Finding every which way to express herself she has found various avenues to explore. Recently coming off of the Toronto Fringe festival with her semi-autobiographical solo show about her experience as a polyamorous, pan-romantic, asexaul, she has found her voice to express and share her journey to allow others to feel validated. A feeling she lacked (and still feels varying day to day) for a very long time. Check out her next live show and approach her about your own story, it's all about a sense of community and the only way to do that is to hear about other people's existence.