30 December 2016

When I was a kid, I learned a lesson that my young mind promptly forgot about, until now.

My younger brother and I were playing on the carpet in the new house.  He had recently received an action figure toy, perhaps a power ranger?  It was scattered on the ground among his other loot.  I had my toys out, too, and we were imagining wild adventures and escapades.

I went to pick up his new action figure, and realized it had broken at the arm.  I didn't know how to fix it, so I showed it to him, and he immediately started wailing.  My father walked over to see what was going on, and I instinctively, as I have always done and still do, apologized.

Instantly, both my father and brother were scolding me for having broken the toy.  I knew it was already broken, that I hadn't touched it before.  I knew I wasn't at fault.  But at the time, I thought that the right thing to do was to take the blame so it could be resolved quickly.  Even if you don't mean it, you apologize to your brother.  And I felt bad about it.  So I said sorry, over and over again, without confessing the truth that I was innocent.

An hour or two later, when things had settled down, I realized what I couldn't articulate about the results of my actions.  Probably a realization other people have always known, but I've always had trouble with it.

An apology is an admission of guilt.

An apology is not a bandaid, or a salve, or a step toward resolution.  An apology is not a gift or a courtesy.

An apology is a fancy way to say, "I am at fault here."

And sometimes that feels good to say, even if it isn't true.  Sometimes it feels good to admit wrongdoing, because it takes the heat off of accusations.

But I apologize for everything, to everyone.


Other people don't.

So other people don't encounter the backlash of suddenly NOT saying sorry.  The assumption that you're just being a bitch this week, because your spine is in the way of someone else's convenience.

If I tried to view it from an outside perspective, I would assume that my apologizing does two things:

  • It makes people uncomfortable.  They have to constantly reassure me, and that must be infuriating.  I'm...sorry?
  • It gives people the impression that I am literally constantly fucking up.  If I'm apologizing nonstop, then I am doing things wrong nonstop.  And then they really begin to believe it - and I can't connect with anyone when they think I'm a royal screw up who can't keep her shit together.

He sits beside me in the car and listens to me insist that I will no longer apologize for things I have no responsibility for.  Listens to me say I will not be responsible for more than I can handle anymore.  Will not TAKE responsibility for them by apologizing out of turn.  These are luxuries most other people take for granted on a daily basis, common themes of adulthood that are simply assumed with anyone who isn't me.

And his response is, "Okay, but, you know, if you do that forever, it just kind of makes you a bitch."

If being a bitch means knowing my limits, knowing where to draw lines, refusing to be taken advantage of, and not being punished for things outside of my reasonable control,

then call me Bitch with a capital B.

29 December 2016

Youtube Skips Songs Sporadically When Chromecasted

I turn my head and lift it to graze my cheek against his while he thrusts into me from above.  He presses my chest into the bed, my legs spreading as far as they can under his weight to beg for him.

There's no teasing with us.  There's no aggression.  No mystery, not really.

Instead my fingers curl into his while we both pant and groan.  I match him with my hips.  He breathes into the nape of my neck.  I feel his lips brush my skin and his thrusts go deeper, making me cry out and hold onto his arm and the sheet.


I don't need him to throw me around by my hips, control my orgasms, control anything.  We are too in sync for that.  We just knew what to do for each other.  We just felt, moved, smiled, touched, fucked, breathed, kissed, bit, hugged, rested.

I find my spot, that dip between his shoulder and his chest.  I smell him and me.  I touch his arm, his fingers, his stomach.  He rubs his hand gently over my side and my hip.

It would be so easy to fall asleep.

13 December 2016

I Seem Happy Lately

I say, since I'm soooo low.

He says, can we forget about that whole conversation, I don't know what's wrong with me.

I'm beginning to like him despite myself.  He reluctantly and sadly pulled away at my request, and I guess now that I feel secure, I'm snuggling back in and relaxing into my time with him.  I say sweet things.  I get butterflies.  Maybe it's not fair to not cut things off completely.  But he's just so easy.

He doesn't know the first thing about dating me, though, and if he did, he'd understand why I asked to cool off.  He says little things about me moving in, or playing with feelings, or what sort of boyfriend he'd be.  And I make sure that I buy my own tacos.  But, sushitriste, if it hurts, why are you doing it?  I'm nothing special, and you are well aware.

I breathe in his smell and I exhale into his chest.  I hang on his syllables.  I relax.  I check myself when I remember that there is a more conflicted, complicated creature underneath the comfortable, socialite exterior.

I don't want to be with him.

But I do want to be something special to him.

His little missy.

29 November 2016

I ran them both off on purpose

I had valid, justified reasons.

And I have two men still asking me for sex and a relationship anyways. Two men I've pissed off by disregarding them and putting myself first, but who will say in the same breath that I should fuck them. Two men I've run off, though. In a row. When things got close. Not because they did, but definitely when they did.

I've never really broken up with someone before. Just waited for them to leave me.

Is this normal and right?

Or do I just really want to blow up every interaction that approaches the romantic.

Do I just need to be alone? Do I need to fail, like she does? Or is this how people feel when they are the ones breaking up?

So you can make me come, that doesn't make you Jesus.

Side note to self - please remember that every person you become involved with in any capacity will at some point be upset with you and broken up with, so maybe choose new flings and partners based on what they will do when you say no. Like, maybe look ahead at all.

Side side note - why do I have to be careful to break up with someone sweetly in case they turn suddenly aggressive? I mean he wouldn't probably. I can't do this with people. I can't trust them not to flip or hate me or manipulate me. It's better for me to be alone and sure of myself, than with someone I cannot be sure of.

17 November 2016

Taking Advantage of Kindness

When I'm nice, it is because I am doing a favor, because I want to. It is not my default setting. It is not because "I'm nice." Niceness is not a trait - it is a personal gift.

I give a lot of gifts. All day, most days. To a lot of people. But they are still valuable. They are still conscious decisions. They are not owed anymore than a neatly wrapped game system under the Christmas tree is owed.

You may not choose your gifts and give me a shopping list - they need to come from me.

You may not get angry with me or punish me for not getting you enough gifts if I don't have the budget, or if you expected more.

The more you steal from me, and the less you say thank you,

The less I want to give you.

07 November 2016

Untitled. Just like your mom.

I've moved past looking at posts about love and partnership and burning with jealousy, self pity, and resentment.

Now I wonder - what makes love tick?

Is it cooperation? Dependency? Friendship? Companionship? Empathy? Lust? Affection?

Am I without these things? If so, is it my shortfall, or his? Wouldn't it be easier to go back to how things were and go back to swallowing my upset like a thick, bitter syrup? Or the excusing self blame that was the spoonful of sugar?

I keep thinking there is some comparative scale by which little offenses can be relatable and thereby normal. Other guys do this or that and we say hey, that's marriage. But there's something underneath those arguments, some glue, that I'm missing.

She says, I was only ever happy when I kept things happy by being quiet.

She says am I crazy.

And we all chime together - this isn't normative by the global scale of relative relationships.

But maybe there's just no glue. Maybe he didn't put any glue down, and she is picking up pieces as they fall off, and he's asking why she keeps breaking everything.

I don't need to ask myself if I am capable of happiness or if I deserve it now. But I'm still interrogating myself, daily - am I capable of happiness here? How much is true? What is twisted? Who do I want to be? Can I be that woman here, in this situation?

And the question I hate asking.

Will it hurt too many people to cut my ties and escape out of this cocoon I've built up around myself? If I were happier, or if I were lost and regretful - it doesn't matter to me as much as "will it, will I, wreck everyone else for no good reason?"

Because wouldn't it be easier to squeeze my bulging self back into the shell and see through what I've never seen reason to leave before?

Can I grow, can I move, in this one spot, so I don't make anyone uncomfortable with my mass?

25 October 2016

I Want Out

Of this funk but
Everything you say sounds tinged with impatience and
I know you are moments from snapping at me so
I put my sadness down for a moment and
Try harder to get ahead of your requests and
Do what you need before you have to ask but
When you finally go to sleep I
Am exhausted with nothing to hold except
The sadness I didn’t make you deal

14 October 2016

39 Days

His eyes are hellfire, and he presses toward me.  He means to be threatening, but I slide into his space like a cat.  I am wired backwards.  All I want is his hands on my throat, his teeth in my skin.  I stare at the line of his throat, the curve of his jaw, his tightly pressed lips.  I don't want to play.  I don't want to giggle.  I want to be hurt, to be worshipped, to be destroyed.

I watch his brow lift in understanding.  He reads me like a book.  He grabs my wrist and spins me around, shoving me forward into the wall, my elbow slamming into the wood.  His breath is hot on the back of my neck, and I can feel the tingles trickle down my spine.  His other hand grabs my hair and, more gently than I anticipated, tilts my head to the side.  He nips my ear.  Kisses my nape.  Tightens his grip.  I feel him get hard.

I push my ass against him, purring at the sensations.  He lifts my hand over my head and pins it to the wall.  His other hand releases my hair and my eyes squeeze shut as he drags his talons down the length of my back, excruciatingly slowly, devilishly deeply.  I feel the blood well up, and the odd, cool wetness as it drips to my waist.  I can feel him shifting, sometimes human, sometimes demon, somehow both.  He is enjoying this.  I need him to love this.

He bites into my shoulder as his fingers smear blood around my hips and toward my front.  He hugs my lower belly as he grinds into my backside.  I grind back, too desperate for contact to wait, too hungry for touch.  My enthusiasm is rewarded with a deeper bite in the same spot and a hand that finds my hood and presses down against my clitoris, circling and rubbing.  I don't know what wetness is blood and what is my own excitement, but he slips his fingers into me and I catch fire, biting down on my bottom lip and moaning while arching aggressively toward his hand.  I

lay down on the bed, thinking about the amount of time we can afford to leave the child watching TV in the childproofed living room.  I think about the chores I need to get done before cooking dinner, and the money that I don't have for the ingredients I need.  I'm not upset - it's easier to use the down time of undressing to plan than to try to build anticipation.

He leaves his shirt on, but he removes his pants.  I can smell three days of "not getting a chance" to shower, and I hold my breath until the blanket is over us.  I'm sure I don't smell like a flower, either.  But there are dishes to be done before the ingredient-less dinner can be made.  A counter to clear and pennies to count.  Maybe a coupon.

He turns on the fan, and while he looks for a condom, I stand and turn it off.  I need to be able to hear if either kid needs us.  Needs me.  I get the light and check that the door is locked while he gets himself wrapped up.  He drips spit on his dick and I recline, lifting a leg and reaching for the buzzy thing.  He works himself into me.  It's uncomfortable, but it will be easier once I start buzzing.  I ask permission, because that's what I fucking do.  He says yes.

I buzz.  He thrusts.  I remember that I have an appointment in the early morning and an insufferable amount of laundry to do.  It feels alright, but I remind myself firmly that it doesn't matter that I'm me, and he just needs this taken care of so he'll be nice again.  After all, we can't love each other if we don't fuck.  I wait for him to finish with my eyes shut, trying to like the buzzing.  He comes into the condom, thrusting too hard at the end and hurting me, but I shut up, because let's not ruin this.  I push him away from me.  I set down the buzzy thing and pull on my pants to go check on the awake child who is watching Netflix.  He's doing fine.  I go smoke a cigarette and read on Facebook about everyone having nice sex with nice people and I remind myself that I wanted this, I fostered this, I encouraged this, and this is what I am now.

There's not much point in forcing change.

I wouldn't be worth it.

And if I really wanted change, I could just tell myself to like it, and put the same effort into it that I would if it were with someone who excited me.  Or at least enjoyed me.  Or maybe didn't hate or blame me.  If I REALLY wanted it to be different, all I have to do is make more noise and let him eat me.

This is my fault.

01 October 2016


Having two of me is still better than having none.

April, 2012 - one me barelled off into a different dimension. My first daughter exists there, and that me is holding her, watching her grow and learn. I am happy and life continued on the path I had begun.

The other me, the empty one, the imposter, rests stagnating in this dimension. "Even in empty arms, I feel the weight of you." Directionless, hard headed, determined to never be too happy without her. Determined to bear out the consequences to my actions.

2016 - One me barels off out the door. Shedding my life like an old, scratchy, tight skin that can no longer contain the massive self that has swollen within it. Poised to run. Ready to go. Anywhere.

The other me, the empty one, relaxes into the familiar role. The martyr. The sacrificer. The bitter taste on my tongue is tempered by the repeated reminder that it's acceptable, what I deserve, what I beckoned. What I invited into my home like a blood sucker with a face like justice.

But, two mes is better than none.

I am a woman out of sync.

25 September 2016

Not About Love

The song comes on Youtube Music.  The song I used to listen to every single night after it happened.  In the middle of the shift, at 2 or 3 am.  Sometimes 5 am, when I was setting out breakfast, and I'd sing the words and hum the piano that I knew in my heart as deeply as I knew that stupid ache.

I stand as soon as I see her face, sideways, on a pillow.  I go outside.  He is washing dishes, he doesn't hear the song, or know what it means.  I sit on a chair and I sing the words while I know they play through the television's speakers.

Why did I go outside?

Because I am not ready to share this with him.  I can't trust enough to share this with him.  I can't show weakness, can't invite him into my heartbreak that has been my deepest companion for four and a half years.

Because I am possessive, too, and this is mine.

It's 5:10 in the morning.  The early cars already are drawing deep breaths past my door.  I inhale.  There's still so much to do.  And last night's phrases, sick with lack of basis, are still writhing on my floor.

I watch him leaning over the sink, scrubbing at dishes and loading them into the washer.

Is this who I always want to see in my kitchen?  Will I ever sit inside while this song plays?  Will he ever knock on the door and ask if I'm decent, or will he always just barge in with his newest fleeting thought, ready to derail me and conquer my consciousness?

But I know.  I know, because he's told me, because I ALREADY knew, that no one else can be in that kitchen.  Maybe an empty space.  But no one else can know this song.  No one else will deal with me.  Will entertain my vain panic attacks or my selfish temper tantrums.

But I'm not being fair, 'cause I chose to listen to that filthy mouth.  But I'd like to choose right; take all the things that I said that he stole, put them in a sack, swing them over my shoulder, turn on my heel, step out of his sight, try to live in a lovelier light...

But this is not about love.  'Cause I am not in love.  In fact, I can't stop falling out.


I miss that stupid ache.

22 September 2016


The day we started dating, I had already turned him down a couple of weeks prior. But we found ourselves not so romantically at a diner, after I had too much coffee. My hands were shaking, part from the coffee, and part from bad news. He skewered a piece of broccoli on my fork and fed it to me flirtatiously.

It's a stupid story, I realize.

But at the time I saw in him someone who was patient and committed to taking care of me. I was wrong. But that was what it meant to me, that dumb piece of broccoli on a fork.

So we started dating.

For years, whenever we had broccoli with a meal, he'd feed me a piece. A ritual based in bad news. A sweet gesture. I guess.

This morning he tried to wake me up when I accidentally slept in. He brought me steamed vegetables (I think from a microwave pack, which I typically dislike). He put a piece of broccoli on the fork and tried to feed it to me.

I'm glad I refused (thinking in my dream state that it was a piece of raw shrimp), because looking back now, it was another ploy.

Since we've been "separated," he's been doing every trick he knows. Not being nicer. Just doing things. Mowing. Doing the dishes. Still leaving his trash around, but calling me pet names when he answers the phone. Making plans.

He's trying to pull me back in without having to respect the separation. He's trying to make me feel like the bitch so I'll settle down and return to the status quo.

Well. Joke's on him.

The more of the same act I see, the less I want to be around for more of the same. My dominant emotion right now is frustration at the patterns coming out. Not heartbreak over him.

20 September 2016


I find myself getting angrier this week. Not in general, but I have a much shorter fuse than normal with him.

In the past, every time he did something that frustrated me, showed thoughtlessness, showed indifference, I would pull out a stack of pillows and blankets and padding from my heart. I'd line them up between us, padding the situation with understanding, excuses, a sense of independent responsibility, anything that helped distance me from interacting with his apathy directly.

Now, I've set fire to the blankets. The pillows have burned away. Now I'm facing him raw, and his apathy HURTS ME.

It's not fair of me, but I feel like this is a sacred time for me to build up a sacred space and be a little selfish. And if he wants to interrupt my soul searching, he does not deserve to be comfortably the center of my focus. If he wants to stand in my light, he will get what he's fostered all this time - my hurt and my sadness and my anger, unfiltered and uncovered.

I don't want to protect him from me anymore.

16 September 2016

The Importance of Language

I'm realizing today how important the words I use are when relating to my situation.  For example, there is a massive difference in the following two phrases:

"I want to divorce my husband."
"I want to divorce AJ."

The former detaches emotions from the situation and describes an action.  The latter reminds me the weight involved in the process of leaving the person I have come to know painfully well.  It reminds me, pointedly, that he is a person, and a part of my life, that I will be cutting off if I file.

How about:

"I want a divorce."
"I want to leave him."

Wanting a divorce is like wanting an apple.  It's a thing.  Separate from our relationship.  Just a thing you ask someone for and they give it to you, easy peasy.  Maybe that apple has a cost, like half your communal assets, but look at the second statement.  Now that cost is your partner.  Now that price is years of work on a relationship, and all the heartbreak that came with it.

Now, with the second statements, you are questioning - is this really what I want?  Am I throwing something out that still has value?  Is he right, and I'm just too sensitive?  Do I want to be a victim?  Was I ever really a victim?

Or at least, that's what I get out of it.

Now let's take a look at these:

"It hurts so much when you dismiss me."
"You just have a persecution complex."

Or maybe:

"I think you should be talking to somebody about your depression."
"You should talk."

Maybe it wouldn't be so bad to leave someone who is so positive I've caused all his problems, sapped him of his life, and acted totally bonkers for years and years.  Maybe he'd be thrilled to have me out of his field of vision.

Maybe he just needs me around to feel justified and better than.

Maybe I'm playing into his game by questioning if the good times are really not worth salvaging the marriage.  Maybe, by sitting here and thinking, am I nuts, I'm perpetuating that cycle of low self worth.

Maybe what I should REALLY be thinking is,

"How do I do right by me?"

For the first time in my entire life.

15 September 2016

Reclaiming Myself

A week ago my husband and I sat down and decided to officially separate for a month, and then further with weekly check-ins.  We divided custody of the kids.  We alternated weekends.  We both cried.

I think he cried because he thought the situation was out of his control, and he had failed.  I think he cried because he thought this would hurt the kids.

I cried because after ten years of mind games it's hard to feel confident in a decision made for oneself.  After ten years of questioning if you really were imagining things, if you were crazy, if you were stupid or unlikable, it's more difficult than I can say to stand firm and say no, we can't fix this like we are right now.  We might not be able to fix it at all.

Each day since then, the negativity has crept into my mind like a familiar ivy, weaving into my day and covering everything in hazy shade.  Each day I have wondered if I'm being stupid or rash.  If I'm making this more difficult than it needs to be, like so many other decisions I've made in my life.  If I am worth it, and if I could even be happy with him removed.

I've taken into consideration what my mother shared, crying, over the phone, when I told her what was going on, days after it happened.  She said if I gave myself up, if I forfeited my happiness, if I let him break me down over the years, it would destroy my children.

She is not wrong.

Tonight I thought about how different my life would have been if I had been medicated during college, or even high school.  If I'd had ritalin so I wasn't writing twelve full essay assignments in one night.  If I'd had xanax so that when I arrived late to a class, I wouldn't stand just outside the door, crying in frustration and warring with my own mind about just WALKING. IN. The DOOR.

I thought about how my struggles with time management cost me my first college's tuition.  How my struggles with anxiety and panic attacks left me crippled in ways the other normal kids were not.  How hopping from school to school, feeling incapable and just inexplicably defective, could have been completely avoided by investing in myself.

By showing myself the same mindful consideration and compassion that I showed everyone else by default.

Because when I began my first year at college, I left behind a tattered and high strung mother who did not approve of the person I was growing into.  I began with the conviction that I, a straight A student and a sober virgin, was a slut, a fuck up, and an idiot.

I fell quickly and willingly into the arms of a man who was looking, whether he realizes it or not, for a fuck up.  He was looking for a kind, compassionate doormat who believed she was a fuck up.  Someone humble. Timid. Someone with painfully low self esteem who was looking for validation.

My validation came in the form of objectification.  To this day, he still cites the reason we got together as finding me very pretty and cute.  A stray looking for a home.

And if that doesn't sound predatory to you, you need to get your ears checked.

I was introduced as "my girlfriend, LOOK I GOT ONE IT'S TOTALLY REAL." His friends looked at me without making eye contact and argued playfully amongst each other about who got dibs when he fucked it up.  At the time, I felt so very validated.  I also felt alienated and inhuman.

But maybe I wanted that back then, I'm not sure.

I soon became the appendage that trailed behind him everywhere he went.  I ordered food second, and when we were poor, I sometimes didn't order food at all, if he picked steak.  I stayed home while he gamed with his friends, because men aren't to be trusted, and I didn't know anyone who wouldn't rape me.  At least that's what he insisted.  I started wearing shirts with sleeves and high necklines.  Instead of feeling attractive, I grew ashamed of my shape, detaching emotionally from this thing I walk around in and call a body.

We fought.  Believe me.  We fought about every wrong he did out loud.  I missed so many of the silent things at the time, but we fought about every single thing that was in neon.  Several times I broke up with him or kicked him out of my apartment only for him to refuse to leave.  Several times I locked the door just for him to go in the back before I could get to it, or use a spare key I'd forgotten about.  He would NOT LEAVE.  He would NOT go away, and when we cosigned a lease together, he informed me the police would not kick him out of his own home, and I'd be in as much trouble as him if I called the cops.  Simply put, I couldn't get out, and I didn't even realize how big of a deal that was.

He insists to this day that when we started dating, he was an asshole, and he sees that now.  But I still order food second.  I still miss the body I knew and controlled.  Over time I lost every hobby I had to his clutter or his problems.  His stuff took over my space like that same creeping vine, forcing into my belongings and smashing them, losing them, spilling old drinks on them.  His mother still blames me for the mess.

Piece by piece my personality has been pressed on, bent, and broken.  An attempt to mold me into the perfect partner has yielded a vulnerable and angry husk.

Do you wonder - if our relationship had not been so victimizing to me, would I be so vindictive toward him?

Do you wonder.  If our relationship had not been so DAMAGING to me, would I have had the mental  and emotional fortitude to survive the loss without suffering the panic attacks, the hypervigilance, the constant and overwhelming feeling that something big and horrible is about to happen every day, the loss of ability to connect honestly with my friends and peers, do you think I would have come out the other side with only heartbreak instead of consuming dread?

Do you fucking wonder if I had to live the last ten years of my life this way?

Don't you wonder what I'll do now?

I sure as fuck do.

07 June 2016

Panic Like a Storm Cloud

Every day, everywhere I go, there's a cloud.  A deep, dark cloud that is sometimes right behind me, and sometimes ten feet behind me.  Sometimes I leave it at home, but it's still there, waiting patiently for me.  Sometimes it's right above me, around me.  Sometimes the rain it drops on me is the same as my sobbing, the air shuddering into and out of my lungs is the same as its heavy, wet breath, and my shoulders shake in time to the guttural roar of the thunder around me.

Some days I am consumed completely by it.

It almost feels good to give in and feel terrible.  There's a truth in the total and absolute despair.  The gripping feeling of loss and hopelessness.  The thought that you cannot go any lower than this.

It almost feels better than being constantly chased by it.  Every day, refusing to look over your shoulder, hopping to stay one step in front of it, trying not to drown.  Almost.

It's close today.  I could drop backwards right into it.  I could think for ONE second about any of the demons screaming at my heels and tumble straight back into the deep blackness.

So today, I'm not thinking about them.  They can ALL wait until tomorrow.  Today I am just thinking about how proud of myself I am for being in front of it at all.  Tonight I can fall apart.  Tomorrow I can fall apart.  Today, look at me.

Dry clothes.

31 May 2016

Mind Games.

Do you think maybe one day I'll look back on this and wonder why I didn't get out sooner?  Or do you think I'll look back and realize that I really was the abuser?  That he was right?  That I should have taken more xanax and just been a kind and forgiving person.

How advantaged are women, really?

Those in power will always fight not to give up any portion of it.

I can't believe that he's playing that through, but he is.  He has had the dominant hand in every aspect of our relationship since it began.  And now, the smallest things, the smallest favors or respectful behaviors, seem so very unfair toward him.

But they aren't.  They aren't unfair to anyone but me.  How can you love somebody and not listen to them, consider them, or want them to be happy?

I don't think that he does love me.

I think he's used to me stroking his ego.  And now that I have to worry about myself, I'm a real cunt.

Last night, I took a closer look in my head at a behavior, a nonverbal (well, sometimes verbal) communication between us that always, always fails.

When he grabs my ass.  When he growls, sucks in air, or stares.  When he offers to rub my feet but instead tickles them or rubs them on his crotch.  The little things he does that remind me that my body is only here for him.  The things he does that make me feel like an object.  The things that are ONLY ever done to gratify him and not to pleasure me.  There are no instances where things are different.  There are no other sides to this behavior.  I don't do the same things to him.  He doesn't do things that turn me on.  He doesn't pet my head.  He doesn't bite my shoulder.  He doesn't nibble my ear.  No, the only things he ever does with my body without my permission are things that satisfy him.

Or comments about what my body does for him.

And I don't care how they are SUPPOSED to make me feel.  Because how these things ACTUALLY make me feel is objectified, and like I might as well be a faceless pillow or sex doll because I'm not...I mean I don't even really have to be in the room.  I'm just a thing.  And that's when I shut off, because that's been sex for too many years.  Sex with a thing.  A thing that doesn't need to be present.  A thing that doesn't have needs or interests.

These behaviors put me back into that place, that mindset, and it should matter.  My whole body tenses up and I get angry.  I get guarded against being used.  I don't want to be a thing anymore.

So I suggested a change that I thought could benefit us:

I suggested that from now on, he only touch me when he's first considered how the touch will affect me.  I didn't say he couldn't touch me, or he had to touch me differently or less.  I only said that I needed the INTENT to change.  That instead of touching me to satisfy himself, I wanted to be touched to be satisfied.  He doesn't have to magically know what I like (although by ten years you'd kind of think he would).  He just has to touch me from a different perspective.

Well, you'd think I said he'd never get laid again from the response I got.

I mean, I tried to reverse it, just to explain.  I tried to explain the difference in compliments and assessments.  Like when he comments on my body.  I tried to say, situation A) *brushes hair to the side* "Does this feel good?"  and situation B) *Pulls at hair to look at it* "Your hair turns me on."  I tried to explain compliments phrased around the commenter vs the commented on.  "You look pretty," versus "You turn ME on."

He just told me I should take it as flattery that I turn him on, and that I should definitely care about how my looks impact him.  Then he flipped my entire argument around to make me seem like the perpetrator, my whole argument used against me, saying that I never consider him or something?  I don't even understand it, he just started complaining, and it was like he just fucking copied me right back at myself.

I mean, this was a whole thing.

We got nowhere.

The only way he knows how to function around me, touch me, or talk to me, is in the framework of how I impact HIM.

I will literally never matter to him outside of that.

You know what's really weird, though?  People who like each other.  My friend posted about getting laid, spanked, and feeling so good.  I just thought, "How fucking odd.  They WANTED to touch each other?  They WANT to be around each other?  They CHOSE to fuck and they ENJOYED it?  It wasn't just a quickie to get him to behave human again?"  I mean that's weird, right?

Another friend talked about taking his girlfriend on dates to this one restaurant.  And I thought, what even is that.  Dates?  Do people really still put forth that kind of effort?  I'm lucky to talk to him without one of us yelling.  Usually the only conversations that don't escalate are the ones that are strictly business.

I mean, is it over and I'm just...wasting my time?  Are we too far gone?  Is there a world where I could be happy again?

And the bigger question - are these issues ACTUALLY issues, or just problems fabricated from my skewed, panicked, "the world is ending right now" mindset of my PTSD?

Is it ACTUALLY urgent?

Are we ACTUALLY fighting?

Or am I just picking at scabs so I can see them bleed again?

Who is the real abuser here?  Am I the person I'm calling him?  And he's wondering why *I* keep turning everything around?