Category Archives: Personal

Sexual Fantasy Lives & Lies

This post is WAY outside my comfort zone.

Please stop reading if you’re uncomfortable with sexuality.

I didn’t polish this post. It’s not perfectly well-expressed. That’s okay because I’m not sure my subconscious allows me to process and share exactly what I want or need to.

Most people can’t rationally and calmly think about their partner’s fantasy life, which runs congruently in their heads, whether they are physically with a partner or alone. This is true even though they undoubtedly experience their own. Imagining them getting pleasure by thinking about being with another partner naturally stirs up ancient reactions in our lizard brains. As a result, a lot of couples never openly talk about what goes on in their heads.

Sometimes, they don’t even dare to discuss what gives them pleasure.

Studies regarding fantasy life yield some conclusions that cause discomfort. Some of the most common female fantasies are sex with strangers, sex with a specific celebrity, sex with multiple people, being dominated, sex in unusual places, oral sex (giving and receiving), exhibitionism, forced/reluctant sex, rough sex, same-sex encounters, sex with previous partners, watching others have sex, age discrepancy sex, and even romantic/passionate sex. Men share a great deal of the same fantasies. A common denominator in them is novelty, taboo, or things they’d most likely not participate in.

It’s hard for many people to distinguish between fantasy and life. It triggers an avoidance reaction. That’s because our brain renders real what we imagine. We feel the excitement but also the stress, jealousy, or other unintended issues about ourselves.

The truth is that you can’t really know what is going on in your partner’s head most of the time. But if you’re participating physically, you should focus on your partner’s pleasure. If they aren’t comfortable talking about their fantasy life, there’s a reason. It’s usually complicated, partly because we are still programmed to avoid discussing it. Yes, even when we are in a committed relationship or marriage.

Our largest sexual organ is our brain.

It’s a rare couple who can freely share fantasies without animosity, jealousy, or other emotions. Brain studies reflect this.

“Don’t ask, don’t tell” dominates many people’s lives.

It doesn’t help men to know that women are far superior biologically to them concerning sexual activity and pleasure.

Because our brains are adept at creating thoughts (or dreams) that our body reacts to physically, it is no wonder that fantasy life is so crucial for sexual fulfillment for so many people.

They just don’t talk about it. Not really. The outliers do, that’s true.

I think anyone reading this should read all the major sex studies about sexual pleasure. At least those who are interested in their sexuality. You can Google it by searching for “Most common female sexual fantasies” (or male) and then focus on the percentages of frequency for all types. It might surprise you. At a minimum, you won’t feel so freakish, of that, I’m sure. If you’ve not considered it in depth, though, it might bring discomfort. It might also bring revelation to both you and your partner.

One of the best examples is cuckolding, wherein a man shares his female partner with another man. Over half of men in almost all studies report using it as a fantasy. The mechanisms to explain this can be complex or simple, both from an evolutionary/biological and social viewpoint. It goes against our basic tendency toward jealousy or territoriality. It’s not rational. And that’s the point.

One of the most common fantasies is a threesome. The odd thing for me? That doesn’t arouse me at all to imagine being with two women. I know that sounds like I might be lying. I am not interested in touching two women simultaneously. Both of us pleasuring my partner, though, that is arousing.

Imagining my partner in a threesome, however, is arousing, no matter the combination of sexes. It’s not something I could deal with in real life, though. In a fantasy framework, it’s arousing.

If I transpose that same scenario and try to imagine her having done it in real life, it acquires a negative cloud immersed in retroactive jealousy. It is very hard for me to process rationally.

The same is true for fantasies involving virginity.

Like most men, milf eroticism is arousing, as is the idea of my partner giving someone their first experience. For reasons that fascinate me, it turns me on. Hearing about such real-life encounters in that capacity is another thing entirely. Personally, though, I do not enjoy fantasies of being someone’s first sexual partner. I know that seems contradictory, but it’s entirely normal – not that “normal” is really normal, anyway. I suppose it is to be expected that for me, being taken by someone for the first time is arousing, as is the idea of my partner doing so. But I admit I tread carefully about imagining it in real life, as those thoughts bring unwanted consequences. I’m hard-wired toward monogamy. The commonality of both scenarios is the excitement of finding one’s sexuality or the gift of such an offering.

I realize that I seem to have contradicted myself. Cuckolding fantasies don’t interest me per se. Yet ones where my partner gives someone the gift of their first sexual experience do. I’m guessing it doesn’t trigger the same emotional and visceral jealousy response.

As for my retroactive jealousy, like most people, I have to be able to be sexual with my partner while being aware that some of these fantasies are playing in her head or what gives her literal physical pleasure.

I recently heard someone say, “Don’t be afraid of her toys. They are teammates, not competitors.”

I have to appreciate fantasy life in the same way.

Whether people talk about it or not, it is a huge part of their sexuality.

I was sexually active during my previous adult life, of course. I underwent a transformation when I realized that there were things I liked that surprised me. Being with someone who you trust helps. Knowing they find pleasure in it is what makes it sublime.

When they do share, it’s important that you protect their secret fantasy life. It’s secret for a reason.

Everyone should explore as much of the playground as they can. For love, for intimacy, for each other. Where there is trust, it is immeasurably easier.

Trust yourself and trust your partner.

I trust mine. I’d be in a world of hurt if I didn’t.

And remember, fantasy is not reality. Don’t judge. Or try. That’s hard enough for most of us. We are harshest to ourselves.

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The Essential Extra

If you’re an adult, you should not be worried about responding quickly, double-replying, or being enthusiastic with your communications. Anyone worth your time will appreciate the energy and contact. If you feel that you’re reaching out too much, be aware that someone who dissuades you from doing it isn’t your ideal partner. Move on. The initial stages of chemistry or interest always start with enthusiasm and interaction. Always. If you’re being told it’s too much, move on. I’m being totally serious. People love knowing that what they say is interesting. When they hear it from someone they are wild about, they will encourage that behavior, not minimize it.

People seek out interaction of all kinds when it’s from someone who lights them up.

Without getting sidetracked by all of it, the dynamic of anxious versus avoidant personalities inevitably gets tangled up in this issue. Some people begin to question themselves or get the idea that they are extra. But maybe extra is what the other person really needs. Maybe they’ve never had it before. Or, more likely, they are not far enough down the timeline yet to appreciate the fact that attention and affection are one of the rarest commodities and should be cherished.

As always, put yourself into the shoes of both sides of the argument.

It feels true because you know it is.

When you’re head over heels or enthusiastic, you crave the other person’s interactions.

Please don’t lessen yourself or back away from being extra.

Someone will appreciate it and tell you constantly.

Generally speaking, someone who thinks you are the cat’s meow will do nothing except encourage your interactions. And reciprocate by doing the same for you. Even if they are busy, tired, or distracted by the million distractions that come at us in this modern world.

X

The Fidelity Observation

Preface: A while back, I warned y’all that I’d write more things outside my comfort zone. The analytics are clear, though: posts about relationships, behavior, or anything adjacent to these topics are read by many people. I’d suppose it is because relationships are the central element of our lives. Most of us experience the same issues.

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’ve been on both sides of the coin.

I’m not ever going to be on the other side again.

I’ve been to therapy to discuss all these issues in detail. I’ve read every major relationship and sexual study out there. I’ve spent a lot of time digesting the conclusions. They all convince me that the blueprint I followed for most of my adult life is the only way I can be happy. To remind myself, I ask myself where not doing things the right way led me. Obviously, I was off course! Had I not been, I’d be happily married to someone who follows the same relationship blueprint I’m looking for. I can’t blame other people, not really. Not taking time for deep consideration would result in further disappointment for me.

And because it’s the only way to happiness for me, I’m assuming it will be more than enough for most people.

There is a difference between adultery and infidelity. Don’t fool yourself. Infidelity can be equally damaging. It violates trust, a promise, and commitment to your partner. It involves breaking any romantic, emotional, or intellectual agreements that you share. It does not require these agreements to be spoken. It’s true that boundaries and expectations between people might vary. But if you think rationally, you’ll discover that most of us have the same expectations. We certainly overlap regarding things that we know would hurt us.

Infidelity: any action or behavior that either makes the partner doing it feel guilty – or any action or behavior that is kept hidden or secret because the partner is aware that it will cause emotional hurt. This is true because it is infidelity to the relationship the moment either half of the first sentence becomes reality.

Don’t overthink it. It’s simplicity in its rarest form.

“Fidelity” is an old word, coming from a mix of “loyalty, faithfulness, trustworthy.” Generally speaking, if you can’t write it, say it, or do it openly and in front of your partner without a reaction, it probably falls on the wrong side of the line. You might argue and fight my interpretation. Obviously, though, behavior and words that are intentionally kept from your partner must have some impetus toward concealment. Motives may vary. The consequences don’t.

Behavior that is benign rarely gets cloaked. (There are exceptions.) If you don’t trust your partner to react rationally, that signals a bigger problem between you. The act of concealment, misdirection, or minimizing deservedly draws scrutiny. It’s not rational to keep things from your partner based on how they might react. Their reaction, if they are your ideal partner, won’t be out of proportion or indicate anything other than their confusion or hurt. You have to put in the work when misunderstandings arise.

Healthy relationships with an ideal partner require transparency.

Transparency is a child of honesty.

Stop defining infidelity as a specific act. If it triggers you to conceal or if it will hurt your partner to see it, hear it, or hear of it, it’s infidelity. Yes, I know my comments are a bit general.

Examples: flirty behavior, however you define it. Giving someone the impression they hold your interest. Secret conversations in any form. Sexual innuendo, as it leads to the false (or correct) interpretation that you are available. Sharing your time and emotional energy with someone. We all have a set amount of time, focus, and energy. If it’s spent with someone else, it’s done to the detriment of the relationship. Etc. Again, these are general comments, not an exclusive or inclusive list or blueprint. I didn’t include any physical examples because I’ve distinguished between adultery and infidelity.

Infidelity is a huge slippery slope of defense mechanisms, explanations, and rationalizations. A kiss, though physical, is infidelity.

The behaviors that get hidden or concealed are the stepping stones to a breach in your emotional intimacy.

The modern era makes it harder to honor your relationship.

Just reverse roles when you’re engaging in actions or behaviors that trigger recognition in yourself. How would you feel if your partner did it? That’s how you know you need to do things differently.

Compassion on a fundamental level.

We all want to be loved and appreciated. To achieve that, we have to learn and follow behaviors that contradict what led us to where we are.

X

Prisms Wash

When the Sun is at the right angle, my apartment is washed inside and out by hundreds of simultaneous prism rainbows. I leave the blinds open for the ficus tree. Sometimes Guino and I sit here in relative silence and let the colors fill the room. We both watch the beauty as it travels omnidirectionally.

Güino is with me on my lap as I did the short video of me near the window.

X

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Anger, Flying Windows, And A Cat

Entering the convenience store, I noted several people waiting or milling around. A couple of them seemed uncomfortable. Within a second, I realized why. A woman was standing near the counter, berating the workers for some kind of misunderstanding or error regarding the gas pumps. No matter the content of her argument, all I witnessed was someone forgetting the stupidity of such behavior. Her anger possessed her. I could see it contaminating everyone witnessing it. The woman in question stomped out, hollering, “Never mind! I give up.” When I exited, I could see her angrily talking to another person at the pumps in a different vehicle. “Spread that anger infection some more, yes, please,” I said to myself in my head. I hope I remember the experience the next time I feel anger flare uncontrollably inside me. Anger seldom looks attractive on anyone.

On the short leg of my drive home, I followed behind a Jeep. It happened quickly, so I had no reaction time. The plastic cover inserted into the missing back window frame blew out. I watched in slo-mo as it flipped over a couple of times and went under my car. It seemed inevitable that it would have flipped up and hit my windshield directly. I followed the Jeep, honking my absurd horn. It slowed as if to turn left. I honked again, and the Jeep instead continued straight. As it neared the light ahead, it turned red. When the Jeep stopped, I hopped out and ran to the driver’s side. “You lost your back window back there. It didn’t damage my car, but it’s still on the road. You’re going to be a bit cold without it. Have a great day!” I gave him a thumbs-up and ran back to my car.

Because no one knows how to easily turn into my driveway, the Jeep contained ahead, and I turned in. After parking, I watched the road for a minute. The Jeep went back by in the opposite direction. The driver undoubtedly decided that the cold warranted a return trip for the plastic window insert. It made me happy to think I took a chance to let him know. I’d recommend some screws or duct tape if he’s going to put it back on.

As for Gûino, he will be 15 early next year. He’s a spry, healthy cat for his age. If he is so inclined, he can scrunch down and jump seven feet straight up. There’s no doubt about it that he shouldn’t go outside. When I moved here, and he came back to live with me, his paws didn’t go far from the door and certainly not downstairs. He’s grown familiar with the building, the pitbull who loves cats (really) on the end, and some of the residents. I stopped letting him out in the dark after a particularly scary moment a few weeks ago. But one of his joys is to scamper out the door and sniff, discover, and explore. It could easily result in a surprise or tragedy for him. There’s no denying it. But at his age, given the unlikely scenario that he’ll survive as long as I’d like him to, I stopped struggling with the overwhelming worry he would get lost, kidnapped, or fatally hurt out there. I try to monitor him. Sometimes he fools me. I have three Blink cameras to surveil him. If the worst happens to him, I will be devastated. I’ll feel immensely guilty. I temper that possible outcome against his age. To be inside all the time when I know he’s grown to love scampering outside, sometimes forcing me to chase him on the upper landing, up and down stairs, and across the parking lot. It’s a game to him.

Erika sent me a video from her Blink from yesterday. Gûino had already enjoyed his prison yard time but decided to dart out the door without written permission from me. So, to startle him into remembering he can’t do that, I chased him all the way down the building and stairs, all the way back inside my apartment. And yes, I know I was running a little bit fruity in the video accompanying this post.

I want him to have a longer life. But I’d rather him have a fuller life, even if that brings risk.

As someone who narrowly avoided precarious death a few times, it’s hard to convince me that risk is entirely real.

Love, X
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Power Outage Thought

Last night, a neighbor texted me to ask about the power situation. Which was thoughtful.

I was at Erika’s, watching colorful lights flash after the power went out. And listening to a literal version of the sound of silence. It’s damn near impossible to sleep deeply when the sounds and environment aren’t what your accustomed to. Cats get the zoomies in those situations. They enjoy doing their interpretive dances, often including every human being who’s futilely attempting to sleep.

I don’t sleep with my phone in the room. It’s a habit I followed before, but sleep therapy taught me that it’s about the only way to be disengaged enough, even on a subconscious level. Had my neighbor texted me to tell me that my apartment was ablaze, I guess I would have awakened and made roasted marshmallows over the embers. Because that’s all you can do really. Make the most of what you’ve got.

Also, my apartment was filled with the smell of someone enjoying a natural herb in excess. Because the air wasn’t on due to the power outage, I suppose it must have collected, like cigarette smoke once did in bingo halls. I think I have a contact high. I swept all the stairs and threw down salt. As a deicer, not for any potential margaritas that might be made in my neighborhood today, though the latter is probably more likely.

I did my morning routine in a blur and came to work.

Though there is no direct correlation to my post, I’d like to remind everyone that planning almost anything is impossible. Whether it is a power outage, a surprise November snow, or putting off anything until the next day. Those hours ahead, the ones you’ve set aside mentally to do something important, they might not come. Or life might jump up and say, “Hey hold on a minute there!”

Have a lovely Tuesday.

Just keep in mind that procrastination or delay might rob you of an opportunity to do what adds value to your life. Whatever that might be.

Love, X
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I took this picture through a prism hanging on my landing.
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Meteorite Motivate

The advantage of pre-morningtide vivication is that I was able to see some of the meteorites around 2:45. Later, after I got to work, I observed a few more streaking in the interstices of the light cloud cover. It was beguiling, beautiful, and temporarily luminous. I missed the eclipse of last week due to cloud cover. Because the cold November morning was largely absent vehicles or other people, I observed the streaks in the solitary stillness. Not bad for a Monday morning!

PS no picture of the meteorites… Too transitory to stand in the cold with my camera up, waiting. Witnessing them and archiving a memory in my head will have to be enough.

X
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Mullet Memories

I’m in my cathedral at work. Because I usually have a couple of hours with no one in here with me, I can blast heavenly music curated with the intent to inspire or motivate. My cousin Jimmy used to torture me with Metallica, and sometimes with horrible bands like Pantera. Because he’s been on my mind a lot lately, I played a few songs for him and had to laugh. I also played “Far From Home” by Five Finger Death Punch, a song Jimmy didn’t live long enough to enjoy.I ended the set with a heavenly song from Il Divo, probably the most opposite and contrasting music possible. In his last few years, he would have appreciated the switch. And we probably would have laughed about his mullet.

Each of us has had our mullet years, the ones characterized by uncertain identity and our place in this world.

When we get older, we laugh about our mullet years. But nostalgia makes it golden.

Some of you are probably living through the best years of your life and you don’t even realize it.

Take a minute today and crank up one of your favorite songs. If you do, I hope it makes you vibrant and joyous.

If it doesn’t, go ahead and fill out that  AARP application.

Love, X
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Every Dumb Thing

I woke up around 3 a.m. and could hear the neighbors outside on the landing, their night still in progress.

I retrieved my trusty sheet, put it over my head, and knocked.

“Trick or Treat,” I said. No treats were forthcoming.

My brother Mike would have been 57 today. I don’t know what to say about that. He could have lived another twenty years had his choices been different. If he were alive, I’d prank call him and say, “Good morning, you dumb bast**d!” and then hang up. He’d probably call back and leave a message, “Sew any non-bunching pillows lately?”

The picture is one from Dogpatch: me on the left, Mike, my sister Marsha crouched on the bottom, and my cousin Jimmy on the right. We got to see a lot of things thanks to Jimmy. I restored the faces in the photo. Jimmy’s gone too, but I’ll take a few moments to think about him and my brother today. And I’ll think about my other sister, the one I didn’t know I had for another 40+ years after this picture was taken.

The nostalgia will undoubtedly make me more at peace as the world swirls around me today; my thousands of steps and interactions will remind me of the frozen nature of memory and time.

Each second carries me further away from that moment so many years ago at Dogpatch.

What a day it was.

What a day this will be.

Love, X
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Black Eyed Peas Preach

Though I’m not dogmatically religious, I’d like to write an incongruous post that merges the Black Eyed Peas with the Christian Bible.

The aforementioned group has a current hit called “Don’t You Worry.” It’s vibrant, energetic and a call put away your worries and concerns. It’s one of those throwaway songs, full of pop momentum and repetitious lyrics. It’s also delightful in a way that belies its formulaic lyrics. I’m certain they weren’t inspired by a call to remember that control and worry are the provinces of people unfocused on what’s essential to happiness, especially from a spiritual viewpoint.

I have a lot of issues with religious texts. Sometimes though, truth is where you find it.

Whether it is Matthew 6+, or a verse from my favorite book of Ecclesiastes, among several others, one of the essential truths of most religions is that we are forces living inside bodies. And we’re not supposed to be mental prisoners to the outcome of our worries.

Not to ignore them or blindfold yourself; rather, to rejoice at this moment and to dance with joy. It’s something that older people forget to do as if such a thing is only an option for the young.

The Black Eyed Peas song evokes a reaction in me. Something about it strikes a call to action to remember that for everything, there is a time and place. Maybe it’s because I love the book of Ecclesiastes.

And if your head is cluttered with worry and concern, no matter how justified, you might be distracting yourself from the opportunity to remember to live. To give up control and surrender. To dance, sing, and feel the physical world. But not to such a point that you forget that everything that makes your heart sing can’t be quantified.

You can find truth and reminders anywhere.

If you’re tuned to it.

X
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