Posts Tagged ‘injuries’

#triggerwarning #mentalhealth

Monday, June 19th, 2017

#triggerwarning #mentalhealth

I’ve been struggling badly with my mental health since last fall. It’s been pretty awful in general, and then the small shred of resource and sanity I felt I had — my van/house/freedom — did what vanhousefreedom things do when they have 204,000 miles on them, and started breaking things.

Expensive things. While I was 3000, 1400, and 800 miles from ‘home’, which is a place I don’t really identify much with anymore, that I can’t afford to stay in, but is the most familiar to me.

I’m broke, in quite a bit of credit card debt, which is rising as I’m trying to take care of my body, which is also really pissed, and enjoyed a ratio of playing shows that leaned toward the ‘really sad empty dive bar’ sorts of ways far, far too often for my tender worrysome heart.

I’ve got pals and a warm place to sleep, which is helping me not completely lose my shit. I’m also spending most of my time manically making slapdash art, or sobbing and paralyzed and thinking about how easy it would be to clip an aertery and be done with this shit.

Every day, though, I do something meaningful to get better. I’m seeing a chiropractor to take care of my spine. I got that horrible inflammatory IUD pulled out, and acknowledged my gratitude for the ten years of effective birth control that little angry shit provided me. I’m on antibiotics for an infection I’ve likely had for about 8 months. And for now, I am living somewhere I can actually stand up in.

For a while, I was taking classes to get my massage license back before recognizing the returns were not sustainable (and, let’s face it, I’d be much better off making sandwiches 8 hours a day than going back into the job of touching people). But I enjoyed the classes and I learned things. That’s what you take classes for, right?

I’m also working edges like usual, one of which being to get better at letting go of money when I spend it, rather than being attached to the notion that everything I spend money on be some sort of investment.

I’m having a particularly hard time working up the nerve to get back into therapy, though, and to get on meds, which I’ve recognized it’s time for me to do. Like, actually do, and go through with, this time. I have an appointment with my primary care person in July to talk about it, but frankly, I’m really worried I’m not going to make it that far.

I’ve attempted multiple times before when it’s gotten this bad, and self harm is becoming a regular thing to deal with the sobbing fits, like the one I am stuck in right now while attempting to get ready for the one damn thing I committed to doing today.

I spend so much effort holding in a wall of sadness behind my face, and when the dam breaks, relief doesn’t come with it. Just more pressure and exhaustion. I think about doing the morning walk-in freeforall at the clinic, or going to the ER, usually multiple times a day. But I don’t.

I’ve been trying to figure out why, after so many years of being capable of getting help after how hard I worked to get there, I’m so stuck now.

I feel like my spirit is broken and no one can help me.

I’m consumed with fear that hopping on a medication rollar coaster will make it worse, and I don’t think I can handle anything more.

It seems I’d rather smack at myself qnd bruise my own face to feel relief than walk outside and pull weeds out of the ground (and risk fucking up my back again, I say to myself. Oh, my back went out while putting my pants on a half hour before a band rehearsal about a month ago. Did I forget to tell you that? Probably).

It’s hard to remember a time I’ve felt so alone.

But even moreso, I am finding that I am deeply mistrusting of the health field now. The last two therapists I had (out of four) had pretty shit boundaries.

Both relationships were helpful in ways, but ultimately the situations were very messy and consisted of a lot of loss, especially the last one, which was long term and complicated and multifaceted and ended traumatically.

There are quite a few things I used to be interested in/enjoy that I no longer enjoy after realizing I had to get out of that relationship. And getting out at all kicked up so many self criticisms I have about my limitations in maintaining close connections, and so often being the one suffocated and scrambling to get away.

When that relationship broke, so did my last frayed ties to the ‘healing community’, my trust in it, and my trust in my abilities as someone who was once a teacher in that realm. It broke my confidence in my worthiness to continue to be any type of healing guide or mentor, too. For the best, maybe, but disorienting all the same.

Of course, as I have created distance, I have recognized where being in unethical ‘healer’ relationships enabled me to be unethical and damaging to others myself in my care practice.
For the bulk of my time in the scene, I was surrounded by and looking up to healers and mentors providing therapy to people they were fucking, providing therapy to people they then started fucking, providing therapy to friends who didn’t ask for therapy, incepting their own notions and beliefs into vulnerable people looking for their help, having unintegral boundries and phasing in and out of roles without communicating or garnering consent.. the list just went on and on. And I belonged there. That’s the kind of shit I did, too. I think about some of the things I chose to do now and cringe so god damn hard.

It was a shitshow and I’m glad to be out, but, I’ve not found an alternative for the positives being in those communities allowed me to receive. The modalities, when respected in safe containers, were very powerful and helpful to me.

My trust in writing, which in the past has brought me a lot of connection and relief in the absence of stable relationships, has also faded. I no longer feel empowered by posting vulnerable shit like this and writing about my mental health struggles here. Or anywhere really.

I no longer feel fueled or that I am ‘helping’ anyone by sharing my stories, after a lifetime relying on that to make finite connections while constantly growing and transforming and leaving people behind who were important in my life but wanted me to stay the same when I needed to move on.

I simultaneously feel like such a loud obnoxious burden, and that I’ve forgotten how to take up space.

I feel like a complete sticky fucked up projectile mess, and also like I’m so constricted I can barely breathe.

But maybe broaching the subject now that I’m onto this will shift something. I’ve got shit to do, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to let today be another fucking day I beat myself in the head to stop crying long enough to get it done.

P.S. if you are like I’ve been in the past and have become again and are hurting yourself to deal with your overwhelming emotions, this might help you feel like a little less of a freak about it. It helped me to remember how normal this all is, for all of 5 minutes, anyway.

Say Something

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

“Some are quick to use the crabs in a bucket trope, but it’s important to remember that crabs were never meant to be piled in a bucket.” – Ryan Dalton

Fuck your fucking bucket. Fuck your fucking fear. Fuck you for trying to keep me in it with you. Fuck you for trying to hold me down and stop me from climbing out. Fuck you for trying to erase me and minimize me and manipulate me away from my truth. Fuck you for giving me no other choice but to leave you behind.

Fuck you for not coming with me.

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Related: Rock Lobster: Finding Home.

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Finding Amanda: An internet love story

Friday, December 12th, 2014

Amanda Palmer and Courtnee Fallon Rex Photographed by Steve Kuhn The Art of Asking Book Tour. Sat, November 22, 2014. First Unitarian Church – Los Angeles

When I was young, I thought I had all the answers. Or at least, I thought I knew the problems, the deeper causes of the things I was seeing in people, that needed answering.

And I thought, since I seemed to be the only one who really *saw* what the problems were, saw them and felt them in my guts and talked about seeing them and feeling them in my guts, I was naturally responsible for fixing them, too.

All of them. Everywhere.

That turned out to be a bit of a problem for me. One I’ve since largely solved in my growth, accepting my role as a healer, an activist, and learning about boundaries.

Back then, I kept wishing I had been born earlier, so I could have been a part of the uprising in the 60’s, when “shit mattered”, when the ambient rage against this profoundly sick world order had a focus and a voice.
Now, I really really miss the 90’s.

I did my best to rebel and find my own way, but internalized a contempt for my own perspective and an intense hate for my sensitivity.

As a tiny girl I had started cussing and spewing sexist racist shit like a motherfucking truck driving military sailor, and I basically hated everyone. I lied about my age (when I was 11 I was 14) and hung out with older boys. I started smoking when I was 9, drinking when I was 10. I stole shit and resold it at school. I experimented with drugs.

In middle school I had found my niche as a leader of a small group of nerdy weirdos. I, like most middles schoolers, was bullied and pushed around, once by a large group in my own front yard.

I was the girl who peed her pants laughing, daily, at lunch. I was the girl who responded to being given flowers by immediately eating them. I was the girl who stayed at school until 6pm hanging out with the uncool teachers because they cared about me and I didn’t want to go home to an empty house and I secretly loved and adored them even though that wasn’t cool and I don’t think I ever told them how much they meant to me and I wish I had now (Thank you Mr. Pericone, Mr. Ebi and Mrs. Wollard).

By the time I was 15 I was so acutely aware that the system was a sham, I was going insane. I saw so clearly the dynamic of perpetrated violence in society, and in my life. I saw the pain hiding in peoples eyes, but I didn’t have the support to find my ground to stand against it. Everywhere I looked what I saw was how we were killing each other, and how I unconsciously contributed to that cycle.

I hated High School, even though I barely attended, and once I went there, I immediately fell deeply into drugs. I’m talking deep. Few know how bad it was. I quickly dropped out to join the workforce with a fast food job, so I could go on USEnet and use my minimum wage to buy Nirvana bootlegs, and more drugs.

I had no direct examples of self-supporting ways to cope with the cruelty of the world, and if I did come across them indirectly, they weren’t cool or appealing anyway because they weren’t ‘powerful’ like domination and violence seemed to be.

Emotionally, I was broken open and rawly empathic, connected with attrition and the damage we inherently do to one another simply by existing, and enraged at my impotence in fixing it. Physically, I was, frankly, killing myself.

I hadn’t lived enough then, well enough, to have the decades of varied experience and intense healing it would turn out I’d need in order to break out of my patriarchal conditioning and trust the instincts I was trying to snuff out. I was going crazy in part because that’s what I believed I was.

A new (digital) hope

In early 1995, in Sacramento California, from a commodore 8088 connected to a shell account with crl.com on a screechy modem with an actual WIRE, my dad showed me how to get on this Internet Relay Chat thing he’d told me about.

CRL’s root .ircrc file had a bunch of dead servers referenced in it, and I’d spent likely not nearly as long as it felt like I had being suicidally-frustrated with trying to figure out how to get the fuck online. Dad swooped in, figured out there was a /server command, and my life thus changed forever.

There were words on a screen attached to real-yet-fantasy humans who, when they weren’t talking about overthrowing governments and anal rape, were telling me I was not alone. That the social system we inherited was fucked and we were going to unfuck it by fucking it. There was a space, suddenly, to tell people what I saw.

There were vulnerable conversations about emotion and loss and pain where the ‘real’, world had been about image and learning how to be an expert on being fake. I’d found people who weren’t afraid to talk about the despair we all felt, through a medium that protected us better than any person had.

That was where, I thought, I found salvation. And for a while, I suppose I did. I wasn’t a sad sack high school nerd druggie statistic everyone fucking picked on, I was a social engineer in the thick of a god damn underground hacker revolution that only some people picked on.

My social life was with criminals on IRC, where I could explore my rage, screw the man, and say whatever the fuck kind of offensive abusive shit I wanted. I spent my time on meth and anything else I could find, listening to The Prodigy, chain smoking reds, fucking around with linux and waiting for the years to cycle to the next DEFCON.

I started maintaining my own web pages, gnashing my teeth about the worlds fuckedupedness (and how it caused me to feel), in 1995. I was one of the first webcams on the internet. I had my own irc channel (#nee). I had fans.

People emailed me often to tell me they’d found my site and how much what I was writing mattered to them. That my words mattered to them. I kept expecting waves of hate. They sent me fan art. They shared their stories. They told me I had saved their lives and that my spews of misery and hopelessness gave them hope. They told me I helped them feel less alone.

The first time someone told me I should write a book of my life I had been alive 15 years. I was a social advocate without really knowing it, a musician without accepting it, a community leader without being responsible for it, a digital artist. A flawed and miserable human being, with an intimate community online that fueled and supported me, nodding, saying; I see what you see, thank you for saying it.

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As a musician I had a bit of a business on the original mp3.com in 1999/2000, but had started recording cover songs long before. I went by the name Not Applicable, and I insisted, vehemently, proudly, that my music would always, always be available for free, on my site.

But things change, and so did all that.

The RIAA destroyed mp3.com, and with it, my faith in the world supporting my niche-y emo-enya never-gonna-sell-shit-for-sony music. I went from identifying as an empowered independent artist with a support structure that validated me, from being featured and interviewed by ABC news (and my cam images being used in the original piece as well) regarding the success of the movement I was a part of, to feeling displaced and bullied and utterly rejected, with my dreams in flames at my feet.

With the fall of mp3.com, I also went from being a part of a community of artists and musicians who were, once again, revolutionary, by collaborating worldwide via audio files online, to drifting alone in space. I was always in the top 3 of the ambient electronic charts, and many people sent me remixes of my work and collaborated with me by finding me there, including one of the trance musician idols I’d had at the time, and lots of unknowns who are still unknown.

We were a creative artist economy birthing cross-pollinated artwork existing inside the payback for playback and DAM CD models for making money. It wasn’t going to make us all filthy rich, but it was a god damn fucking internet revolution utopia all the same.

I shrugged it off and didn’t let myself think about losing that community part all that much. I spewed anger at how unfair mp3.com’s demise was, and suddenly focused on the money, the wopping $2700 I’d made in a year, because of course it was just weak and selfish and shitty to want support and connection and love from people.

It had taken such immense courage for me to share my deeply personal and vulnerable music, music that made me cry from being so good and double over in pain for being so raw, music that rose out of me from a dark place I didn’t understand. I kept waiting for the hate to come, especially after I joined the mp3.com community from sharing my songs by DCC sending to friends in my IRC channel.

mp3.com was my taste of vitality as an artist. It was the first place I was confronted with irrefutable proof from strangers that my music was good. It was my bridge, back when I was still the only Courtnee on the internet, and the internet was all the connection with the human race I had that fucking mattered to me. It was a community that I’ve never found a comparable replacement for.

The hate never did come. Perhaps because it never had the chance to. For my efforts, for my courage, I received virtually nothing but waves of acceptance and love, feature after feature on the site praising my work even though I was a screwed up crazy hermit making weird whiney sad music that would never end up on the radio.

Losing that relevance changed me, reconfirmed my doubts in myself. I utterly loathed the music industry, threw up at the thought of playing shows. With mp3.com, I had let myself open up, and feel some hope. The loss of this flow of connection for me was staggering. And because of it I hardened.

I turned to the other revolution I was a part of for comfort and belonging while grieving my artistic self, to find it wasn’t there anymore, either. The geeks, the remaining foothold of my revolutionary home base, are no longer the underdog freedom fighters, and they haven’t been for a very long time. They’re the ruling class in the same system we despised.

It hurts to see your revolution become the system. Maybe even more than it hurts to see the revolution get flat out crushed by it. It’s a fucking betrayal I can only barely wrap my head around, but I feel it in my body. It’s a fucking betrayal I keep seeing over and over again in my life. Seeing the entropy, seeing the fear, seeing how the people who are doing what is most needed in this world are getting fucked and assimilated.

It got under my skin when the powers that be managed to napalm the countryside we were beginning to settle with mp3.com. Feeling like I almost had it, like I was almost valid — and then I closed my eyes and covered my head while the power in the world which already had way more than it needed clubbed me, and when I opened them again everything was different.

I didn’t realize how much I was still hurting. Not until Amanda walked into my office.

I can articulate now, after a lot of processing, and galvanizing our connection a few weeks ago by performing for her and her fans in Los Angeles, I hated Amanda Palmer because she represented for me the person I was who died with mp3.com and the internet as I had known it. Died “because” I didn’t have what Amanda Palmer had — a stream of fanbase supporting her when her conventional link to them [a record label], which I knew would have fucked me, fucked her, too.

She represented who I could be now if I hadn’t divorced from my core and spent years of my life chasing money and stability betraying myself in the tech industry before finding my way back to myself.

She represented for me the damage I did to my soul by choosing to take that path, for going through the motions while shutting down who I really was, for taking the RIAA attacking the home I’d found in mp3.com so unbelievably personally.

She represented the pain in becoming even more isolated and quiet as a musician, my most vulnerable and profound form of art, the paralyzation of being introverted and insecure and losing my foothold.

She represented the reality of only knowing how to be a solo musician making music in the safety of my dark little cave and posting it on the internet.

Healing is a pretty important aspect of being a revolutionary. It’s hard to cheer someone on who breaks through the glass ceiling you’re still concussed from smashing into and weakening for them.

In the rise of the digital music revolution, the unsigned artists of mp3.com got royally fucking fucked. As we grew in closer path alignment over the years, Amanda served as a screen for me to project that disembodied grief.

I had it first. I was there first, I had it, I had the following, I had the waves of love, I had the future, I WAS the future, I was AHEAD, and then I fucking wasn’t. In utter projective emotional simplicity that makes little logical sense, I was an Amanda Palmer before Amanda Palmer.

And then I wasn’t.

In the decade after the blow of mp3.com, and countless other events that knocked my fragile sense of self around back in those days, I am finally beginning to feel and trust in the ripples of reward for the tremendous amount of exertion and surgical accountability it’s taken to come back to where I am ready to step into myself again. Into my seeing, into my caring, into my vulnerability, into the vivid authenticity that steams off of me as a performer and a music maker and a singer, into my talents, and into my contributions.

It’s been a long decade.

Finding that I was still so emotionally fucked up over a website going down a decade before was an embarrassing reality to resign to in order to write this, but it’s just the honest truth of things. The impact to fragile hiding 22 year old me, losing mp3.com and what it represented in my life, at that time and at that point in my delicate career, caused a painful rift between me and myself that has taken a long time to sew back up.

Thank you for helping me heal it, Amanda. Thank you for helping that part of me come back.

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

“When we have the courage to publicly heal our wounds, our entire community is given greater access to their healing as well.” – Nekole Shapiro

You said I was safe

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

Slimed

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

Cue struggle/recovery phase in which I am frequently brain accosted with the image of being penetrated by a greedy indiscriminate budging phallus slicked with primordial snot and covered in an oppressively thick layer of tiny diseased insects frantically climbing over one another.

I am haunted by images like this; Not only was I incapable of consent to the sexual activity in itself due to being ranting breakdown drunk, we ‘negotiated’ foregoing my long-established boundary that we always use protection without my having the knowledge that he’d been fucking someone else without it for months.

When that visual strikes me, I feel marked. I feel slimed and profoundly disgusted. My legs close tighter, and my guts fold over themselves like I have been invaded by an evil opportunistic disease. Occupied by lies and self serving opportunity. Like my body, and to a degree my trust, simply isn’t mine, anymore.

Oftentimes I respond involuntarily with coughing and deep gagging. I stop and wretch periodically, for seemingly no reason, to the outside world.

When this started happening with me a few days ago, I slowly realized that I was also plagued with another issue: My throat has felt constricted and closed off, as if I were being physically strangled by tiny ghosts.

After a little noticing, I realized it was because I felt like being vocal at all about how what happened is manifesting in me, and being honest that it fucked me up and continues to be something I am struggling with in the back of my mind and in my body, is somehow a burden, or too raw, or too.. something. Like my experience wasn’t violent or malicious or horrible enough for me to deserve to be seen about it.

I wondered if owning that it was textbook second degree rape made me the bad one somehow, and maybe I felt self stifled because I should stop using that awful triggery word in favor of contriving something more poetic and approving.

I wondered if my trepidation regarding my concern that any person I approach with vulnerability about this will dub my response as unjustified, or choose to empathize with the poor guy who chose to rape me and violate some of my most important personal boundaries, was stronger than the rest of me. If I really believed I would just feel more alone and fucked up about it than I did in my silence.

After about two days of this, I shared these visuals with someone, to work my way out of that shame and tinyness. And it was a good choice; He was empathetic and right there with me, wretching a little bit himself. It was an important step, and it helped us know one another better.

Seriously. Fuck that shame and tinyiness. I was taken advantage of by someone who chose to be a self serving opportunist and betrayed the depth of his continued disrespect for my established boundaries as well my personal well being. I was raped by this person and it fucking sucks and it feels horrible and I’m responding exactly as any sane visual processor artist type person would.

“Healing doesn’t mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls your life…….”
― Akshay Dubey

These visions are good for me. They are healthy. Being appalled and self protective is healthy. Feeling violated is healthy. I know this, because I know what an unhealthy response looks like. And I think, having known only that coping before, it just took me some time to get used to who I am now.

So who am I now?

I am, in fact, not armoring up about it, staying enraged, going on a revenge rampage, trying to complicate his life or hurt him out of spite or a need to get back at him for anything, like part of me still expects I should.

Instead, I am taking care of myself, continuing to live my life, investing in my own future, and feeling things other than this fucked up creepy stuff. I am taking worthwhile emotional risks in my friendships, setting healthy boundaries, and trusting in fewer and fewer people; only those who have genuinely earned and continue to earn that trust.

I am not internalizing the bad behavior I am allowing myself to be feeling the effects of (BRAVELY, MIGHT I ADD; SUPER HARD FOR ME KTHNX) by acknowledging the reality of what that is looking like. And I am not being a bad person by having the stones and the desire to share my story with others.

Most importantly, and probably most uncomfortably, I am not making excuses for what this person did. I am not compassion baiting myself, shaming myself for not spending more of my effort feeling sorry for him, or spending my precious energy trying to see things his way. I have no interest in being a part of his recovery or his life. And I am not feeling as though I can’t move on from him or the trauma without reconciling, or making my trust being violated by his choices my fault.

Acknowledging is not the same as wallowing. I am far from comfortable; but I actually think I’m doing pretty fucking well, all considering.

*shudder* ick.

Sketchbook update

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

First page with color in my tiny sketchbook. It will be full by summer, I’m betting.

The infirmary

Saturday, April 26th, 2014

Injured, fed, home. Playing the walking dead game, sitting in the perception that there are worse imaginable things I could be going through, like it were a mental stitz bath.

This has let me feel something, other than my mental anguish, my how the fuck could they, my I can’t believe this happened, my why is this all happening now, for the first time in a week.

When the sensations come in my guts I stop to hear them and experience them arise and pass away, and that calms my mind down. There’s no room if I just focus on the roller coaster in my gut without thinking things to go along with them. Just focus on what my body is saying.

Not how disgusted I am at person one. Not how utterly gutted and horrified and crestfallen I am about person two. Not how focused and guarded and exhausted I am.

Being able to tune that out to see deeper now brings me hope. I’ll heal. I know how to now. I can feel myself doing it. I’ll be stronger after this. I’m already stronger after this.

Perfect clarity helps with that; I am so. Fucking. OVER, weak men.

The biggest part of the reason I am in this place now is the people who have shown me allyship. The ones who allowed me to be in my experience while I’ve processed this without judging me, expecting me to rise above it, or inserting themselves into it.

To be able to hold space for someone in true crisis like that is a virtue, and I’m glad I have people around me who can do it better than I can most of the time.

Without those people, and my courage in finally opening up to them, I don’t know how long it would have taken me to trust anyone again to really turn to or talk about it with.

This experience has been such an eye opener. Such a lesson in rape culture and shame and utter betrayal and loss and stunning confounded amazement.

If I were to describe it, I’d say it feels like someone stumbling down an ally who just got buckshot in the gut, but isn’t dying.

It didn’t even occur to me not to spend this weekend alone until someone on my tiny person list really saw me and asked me over to be with them. Being with people has helped.

I’m a zombie. I’m in shock. I can’t do a lot right now and I locked myself out of my house accidentally. At best, I can stomach about half a meal in a day. I cried at a directors meeting. I’m a wreck.

And that’s what I’d expect I’d be, and that’s probably what I’m gonna be for a little bit longer. Not too long. But at least until my art and music stuff is out of that house and back with me, and I no longer have any ties remaining with either of them.

I’ve had a spoken word piece materializing as I learn this lesson and write the closing chapters of a long, long story in my life. The story of a rapist I’ve known since I was a kid and how their voice has effected me. I expect when I return to open mic, that is what I will have to bring.

I made new art today with Jim Wilkinson modeling for his SEAF project this year. I’ll see if I can post the pictures of me after the festival.

Time to go cry a little more now, and try to draw.

Solidarity

Saturday, November 16th, 2013

I had a get last night. A pretty big one. A few of them really, but one in particular that brought about a bit of an ‘ugh’ along with the ‘ah ha!’.

It came about while reading the rather surprisingly amazing comments on this post, about a female artist who creates a series of self portraits while on an acid trip.

In a nutshell, I suspect that, though it often helped me to care a little bit less about what a weirdo I was, my choice to use psychedelics heavily during the intensely depressed and forlorn periods of my life actually trained my brain to stay in those places.

I think that constantly exploring those parts of my psyche so deeply as my mind was still growing evolved me into the person who has struggled so much to resurface and keep my head above water since then.

Generally, when I think or talk about my drug related past, it is to ruminate about being an extreme meth abuser through years of suicidal tendencies and having somehow lived. Or, it’s to illustrate how the experience of pot changed for me over the years – I absolutely hated it when I was younger, and felt very alien and paranoid when I did it, but now, it’s calming and enjoyable for me. I haven’t really spoken in depth about my past psychedelics use, specifically, very much (Though I do occasionally write here after smoking pot, and it’s pretty awesome, allbeit slow going).

“Everything you can imagine is real.” – Pablo Picasso

My teenage psychedelic use (speaking of mainly acid, which I did an amazing amount of) was both deeply blissful and fucking horrifying. I rarely prepared my psyche for it, and almost always did at least twice the dose as would have been appropriate. I had some of the worst trips, the most horrendous visions, sinking horrible anxious torrents of emotional torture, and often was transported into a special brand of hell catered just for me when I dropped acid, the images and fears of which lingered with me long after the effects wore off.

I also found sanctuary, beauty, and joy through other trips, particularly E, when I was a bit older, which was starkly contrasted by a reality where I was nearly exclusively incapable of seeing those things.

Especially in those less frequently positive instances, tripping helped me discover and revisit a well of immense emotional intelligence (not to be confused with emotional maturity, which I’ve only recently developed). But they were atypical of my experiences in total, which were usually laced with anxiety and tension, even if I was having some fun/learning too, and the good trips still had difficult comedowns.

Rarities as they were, positive drug experiences opened doors to profound compassion and understanding for the human condition, and connection with other people, when I otherwise felt an incredible isolation from other human beings that constantly crushed me from the inside.

Like sex and probably other things, though I rightly appeared on the surface to be capable, knowledgable and deeply educated due to my experience, drugs were a responsibility I was not prepared, or even remotely ready for when I had adopted them heavily into my life.

My relationship with drugs was abusive, unstable, obsessive, and an utter codependent roller coaster – like all my intimate relationships were.

I honestly believe that I didn’t know of any better way to deal with what I was going through, and I feel compassion for my past self who was in the position to be making those kinds of decisions – the ones where you look between oblivion and burning alive and have to choose. I had a lot of those, and I did the best that I could.

Visiting all this hindsight caused me to wonder what it might be like to revisit using psychedelics again, now that I’m a lot better off and have healed from much of the self abuse I inflicted. Perhaps they could help repair the damage that perhaps they helped me inflict. I don’t feel the need to jump into anything, but the idea of trying proper doses of a few things to explore what they may have to offer me is appealing.

My psyche shifting into stronger foundations has been a big part of my life lately as I’ve charged bravely though another encompassing wave of progress in therapy. This is the main reason I would consider possibly maybe thinking about the potential of doing this now, after inhaling far more than any number of human’s fair share of drugs in the past. For the first time ever I am enjoying the emergence of a psychic foundation that is stable, expanding, and wholly mine.

I’ve been longing to write about these progressions, but been waiting for it to flow naturally. It’s taken a long time by my standards, even though I’ve used the drafts feature on here more in the last year than I’ve ever done – the concept of letting a post mature into a complete thing rather than S.O.C. writing is a relatively new one since v3.3 – but I like it.

At any rate, this line of thought is a great segue into finally posting about something I’ve had circulating in my drafts for the last few weeks. Yay, drugs (and art!)

Lately I have noticed this fracture in my personality, like I have managed to mostly dismantle my identification with the pain in my past. Where it used to be subconscious and simply immediately true and acted upon, now I sometimes hear the learned behaviors from the abuse speaking as if it weren’t actually me. It’s like I am in third person watching a kid version of myself that looks like an adult version of me saying/thinking disturbing shit. I saw that lost little girl a lot last night. Sorta heavy today.- Facebook Oct 26 2013

As previously mentioned, I’ve been in a pretty good groove as far as that whole personal progress shtick lately, illustrated in the Facebook update above as my increasingly natural ability to observe myself with curiosity and nonreaction/nonjudgement.

The development of my inner world into a multi-leveled compound, the discovery of the children in my underworld, and allowing my personality splits to flesh into characters has been very fruitful. So many things make sense when I view myself this way, and for the most part, I am impressed and fascinated with how my mind protected itself all those years ago. I admit, it’s pretty fucking weird, though.

I think, due in part to my personality being splintered, I generally will have a very specific type of overwhelming physical and emotional reactions to intensely connecting with another person sexually (and also things like very intense/vulnerable performances).

When thrust into that sort of extreme emotional vulnerability, I can immediately retreat deep into often inarticulateable recesses of my psyche to attempt to return to myself as a reaction to it. It’s a common response after opening and allowing another person inside me and, more importantly, deep into my emotional world. I shake and cry and blubber things I don’t remember saying. In the past I’ve sometimes needed to detach physically from the other person in order to regain myself and calm down.

This is one of the reasons I am so very selective as to the people I pursue long lasting sexual relationships with. I, rightly, don’t trust a lot of people to be a successful container for that, even though it only happens a handful of times a year.

I had a breakthrough on Halloween which, incidentally, occurred while I was stoned (I also saw Liddell for the first time while stoned), directly after having very intense and connective sex. My experience was that I had just finished having a universe-hopping orgasm that essentially transported me into myself, and while I was there, my perspective changed.

Suddenly I was viewing through a holographic-like perception of a person I wasn’t familiar with. Sort of like when the optometrist swaps out those monocle-looking lenses to test your eyes – except it also manifested translucently in my spirit and my being, not just my vision. It was like my eyeballs had been magically swapped out for ones that saw a different (or additional, as it turned out) spectrum, and I felt a deep sadness I couldn’t explain.

It wasn’t that I became someone else. I was aware of myself and who I was and was conscious. But I wasn’t.. here, either. It was confusing. I was discombobulated and thrown off. I started to cry, and began searching for someone familiar inside me to direct my awareness to. I found Liddell, and started talking aloud to her (I don’t really do that very much..) repeating “It’s ok. It’s ok. We’re going to be ok. We’re in this together.” while I clutched my chest, crying, searching around in confusion, still on top of my lover.

At the time, I came to the conclusion that one of my shadow personalities on my upper level, the advisor level where the adults are, one of the ones I am aware of and can see a vague outline of but haven’t met yet, was now gone. I felt space where there wasn’t space before, the outline had changed from being solid and gray and having substance to its center to being whispy and white and open in the middle.

At the same time, there is nowhere else for this figment to go but within me – so, it seemed at the time that one split personality had fused with another. I thought Liddell, since she was the available one, and I lived under the assumption for about a week that Liddell had somehow sucked up another chunk of my personality like a little highlander.

A week or so later, I talked with my therapist about the experience. After explaining as best I could and being pretty befuddled about it she says to me, essentially, that if an absorption is what happened, it’s kind of the point of all this work.

The theory we currently work under is that consistent formative trauma split me up, but I didn’t go full MPD (now referred to as Dissociative Personality Disorder), probably because my dad stayed around. While he was his own brand of crazy and damaged, he was consistently there, and he fought hard to be that person in my life.

Though I have personally splits, and a history of dissociating into them, I also have threads that interconnect me to them all, and I don’t experience time loss or amnesia inherent in a true Multiple Personality Disorder.

I haven’t dissociated in months, really, save one time, and when it happens, it’s much easier to control and observe. I recognize that something that feels awful (it took a while to figure out what that feeling even was, or that it was a bad touch I could do something about) is controlling what I am saying/doing, usually in aggressive/standoffish text messages with my primary lover, and it takes me much less time to overpower the primate, apologize and begin interacting reasonably again.

Apparently as I heal psychically, eventually, they will all be reabsorbed somehow. I took the next week processing through the images and shifts in perceiving myself as having miraculously fused pieces of my mind together, as well as being a little put off by the idea of my Liddell being more beefy. I mean, she’s kind of a tunnelvisioned brute who caused me an awful lot of trouble.

I went back into my next therapy session wanting to talk about my experience sitting with the space that was created when it happened. How that space sometimes felt like an articulated single bubble in the intestinal caverns of my mind, and other times that space felt like the bubbles in carbonated soda, diffuse and impossible to hold. It was shifting and nebulous and I hadn’t put my finger on it.

Been feeling really good and focused and productive in my personal goals lately, in general. Lots of art progress as well as personal stuff, and my relationships with other people feel a lot more stable and safe. I am also periodically sad and kinda weepy right now.  After an entire life of extreme moods and feeling like about 20 fractured people, I only just became aware of the core personalities that have been motivating me a few months ago, and when I did, so many things about me started to actually make sense. It was sort of weird but also a tremendous relief to find my underground. – Pt. 1 of Failed Facebook update, saved in this draft version

I also talked about my various emotional reactions, which included a sense of sadness and abandonment. I’ve only just begun meeting these parts of me, and already, they are leaving? I’m so fucking disposable that even the voices in my head that I haven’t met yet go away?

And if the point of all this work is to get rid of them all.. where does that leave me, a person who knows nothing else but fractures and inner tensions stretching my mind and feelings to their conclusions? Despite enjoying frequent moments, and now a very quiet, subtle and lingering sense of a wholeness, I can’t even IMAGINE my inner world being one whole. I can’t even imagine it. It’s all I’ve ever known, even before I knew what it was – *I* don’t even possess the ability to *IMAGINE* being an entity without those inner pulls and conflicts. The fuck.

I’m up for this and will face it head on and it also feels like no sooner did I make those strides to meet these little people in there, they’re leaving. I mean, I want to, but I am also scared and really don’t have any idea what the fuck I’m doing. Since I became ready to find my mom almost a year ago now, all this stuff has really accelerated, and sometimes I kinda feel like, hey, slow the fuck down, dude. – Pt. 2 Failed Facebook Update

After confiding this, my therapist asked if perhaps I could say goodbye to this ‘lost’ personality, to complete what had happened. I thought about it for a while and replied that though my emotional reaction told me that it would be a worthwhile process, I wasn’t able to because I could not visualize, either literally or in a figurative manner, who or what went away. Until I could do that, I wouldn’t be ready for the closure of a goodbye.

So she asked me to tell her about them. Look around and see if I could sense together what this personality had been about. I cleared my mind and waited. And waited. It seemed like a mile of blank, and I remember thinking how impatient and annoyed I would have been not long ago, and how I would have given up looking and changed the subject before the length of time I had already been waiting.

Not long after that, a visual flash hit me – a cartoon of a small, smooth, round, bubbly shaped, tiny little monster, peering part of his head around a corner, and immediately hiding again. He was jet black, with huge all-black marble eyes that both made him adorable and creepy. He purred and clicked when he moved.

He reminded me a little of Stitch, in his mannerisms and in that he was utterly alone. No one else like him, anywhere. Alien. So lonely, terrified of being discovered, dissected and tortured. Constantly hiding, curling up in tiny corners and shoving himself into little nooks that were so tight he couldn’t move his little body. Not a cell of violence in him, and not a cell of confidence either. Tender, agonizingly vulnerable, and completely afraid.

I spent a long while after that recalling just how lonely and small I felt growing up. I was too intelligent and insightful to tolerate my insufferable peers, too morbid and dark to fit in with the adults, extremely sexual very early in my life, and was just a weird messed up kid. I was also clearly being traumatized, hence forcing much of any perceptive adult to feeling immediately uncomfortable and helpless and often confused around me, which I of course sensed and internalized.

(Also of significance, he was a he – only the second male I’ve discovered thus far, the first being a small child who, until about a month ago, subconsciously bared the burden of serving as a conduit for the totality of the flow of my emotions. That was a hell of a therapy session, and I somewhat wish I’d written about it when it happened since I don’t much recall the details now, however I processed that by talking with my loved ones about it, so I’m ok with it. Maybe that one will come out a bit later. This is already a lot.)

As I described this little black alien cartoon I’d just discovered, I noticed behind where he had poked his head out for a moment was a hallway, propped in heavy slate grey walls of smoothish rock. Not machine smoothed, but worn smoothed, like the side of a mountain under a waterfall, but dry. As part of that wall of rock, I saw the space – a perfect outline of his little body.

This post is called Solidarity because when I began drafting it, I thought I had fused. Instead, it seems I have learned that my hider was an ethereal massless alien shape shifter; And, I can see him, now.

For some reason, the title still seems to fit.

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Still contemplating whether I’m going to act in Minor. I think, maybe, I might be done with that type of acting, and sometimes I wonder if maybe it would be just the right shade of amazing to at least go through the process of auditioning some younger girls for it.

I guess the plan is just to keep working on my own stuff, and when the show has simmered enough, I’ll know. But I think it’ll be a while before I work up to where I have the energy to bring that shit what it needs.

I kinda can’t imagine feeling that good, at the moment actually. Body’s been hurty lately. Zzzz..

For the love of

Saturday, September 28th, 2013

What happens when an overworked artist gives herself food poisoning a few days before the gig that she’d planned to rehearse primarily in the days leading up to the event?

Well, it means that you do all the rehearsal you’d planned in the afternoon before the evening gig – and this is what it looks like when both costumes have open knees.

The part where I was processing the tail end of the bacterial onslaught, literally, before and between performances, was an extra special bonus.

Yeah. It sounds super dramatic, but really wasn’t all that derailing – just a little loosey-goosey in the rear and didn’t stay for the party after. Think twice before eating that old floppy broccoli, though.

Currently icing my back, stretching my shoulder, and have my knees treated and bandaged. Drinking herbal tea, about to eat some protein, and crash like a sack of smashed assholes. Zzzrr…

I still rocked it, btw.

The present past

Thursday, May 9th, 2013

I’m conflicted about publishing this. It’s long been hidden in the drafts section of neevita, offline since phuqed.org slipped quietly into the night, like most of the stuff I wrote about back then. There are rape triggers and erotic elements. It’s difficult subject matter and I expect that isn’t limited to how I am reacting to finding it again, and it will probably bother people.

However, it’s timely. As our social media begins to question and speak out about rape culture I’ve been thankful that I hadn’t ever been taken advantage of like the young women I’ve been reading about, many who died of suicide later.

The stories I’m reading are horrible. But, it doesn’t take the extreme of being video taped and physically abused by men who then brag about their deeds to cause real damage. I would argue that few rapes are so cut and dry and easy to identify. Mine wasn’t.

One of the main points I am hearing that I wholely agree with, is the lack of education surrounding what rape is, and how to recognize it.

Mostly, I hear this being called out as needing to be explained to men. And clearly, that’s true – the facts and actions of the perpetrators of recent crimes like the Steubenville rape show that, and most of the literature and advice surrounding preventing rape lies in the hands of the women.

But there are so many women who limp, injured and violated, for years, without understanding why, or what it is that happened. There are so many people who don’t understand coercion, manipulation, bargaining, or what consent means, or even if they’ve given it or not. Don’t understand that curling up in a ball and being pestered by someone to fuck them while they’re half drunk isn’t ok, isn’t their fault, and isn’t the way it’s supposed to work, no matter who you are.

In fact, though I’m incredibly connected to the results of the transformation that came about from this experience, which I had when I was 16, I’d completely fucking forgotten about the actual incident. For a long time afterwards when I did remember it, I was an apologist for my own rapist. Feeling for him was more natural than feeling for myself. Because my rapist wasn’t a monster. He didn’t stalk and hunt and tie me down and beat me up and hold a knife to my throat like I was taught rapists do.

I wrote this nearly 10 years after the incident, once I had finally discovered psychotherapy, and began to recognize that the manner in which I had weaponized and harnessed my sexuality was hurting people I cared about – and also damaging me. I wrote because I’d found where my sexuality had shifted from seeking intimacy and caring to a wielding of power and a hatred, from exploration and connection to a deep subconscious violence.

Maybe there is another kind of rape, that we aren’t talking about as much when we warn people about bad touching and fighting back. The kind that’s learned like abusive tendencies that continue as unconscious obliviousness and corrode and damage us. The kind that encourages us not to see or be seen like any other subtle form of abuse.

Even 10 years later, I still couldn’t see what had happened to me as rape. Even now, I struggle to call it what it obviously was. Because that means I will have to look at it.

That means I will have to stand in the possibility that rape can be something unconscious, something that sometimes, people don’t even realize is happening. The possibility that rape could be faultless and subtle. It means I will have to look at what all the other times were. All those other times I laid silently, feeling deadened inside, skin flushing in heat and anxiety, paralyzed, hiding, responding by staying limp and quiet, hoping they would notice..

and stop.

What if I told you I was awake
Written by courtnee on June 9, 2006

Note: I created a playlist which accompanied this time in my life. You can listen via flash here.

I can tell something’s wrong. You won’t look at me, your face is sour, you’re slouching more than normal and that vein on your head is real obvious. If I had the fucking balls to stand up for myself, I’d confront you right here and now. Right here in the train station. If I had the balls I would pin you down and make you admit what you did to me. Make you apologize. Make you fucking suffer.

But I don’t have the balls. In fact, I’m such a fucking doormat that I feel sorry for YOU and what a horrible fuck you must feel like. I’m afraid that if I stand up for myself you will leave. My best friend. My only close friend.

I go home and think about what I will say to you when you get back on IRC. How will I approach it? Should I scream at you, be angry? Am I supposed to be sad and afraid? Am I supposed to call the cops?

I know I am supposed to do something. And I know it’s supposed to be something strong and amazing and smart like everyone says I am.

But all I can do is mourn the loss of our friendship and pine for things to be the way they were before I woke up from a dead sleep to feel your hand down my pants. Before I felt the hot flash of adrenaline course through my body and paralyze me with fear and disbelief. Before the thought of stopping you flashed through my head but dissipated instantly when I considered how badly and pathetically you would react. Before I heard you whisper ‘grow’ while you clutched my breast. Before I thanked fucking god I had a tampon in.

I ache for the person I once knew, who was into books and parks and speed walking who didn’t like to be touched. The person who used to love when I would play guitar and sing, whose piano playing amazed me, the person who had tasted my tears after brushing them from my cheeks with his finger. The person who was so disgusted with human contact I thought I would never have to fear him like I did others. I ache for his regret, his pains, and that he has to live with what he’s now become forever.

I know I should hate you for what you are now. I know I should want to kill you, hurt you somehow, and sometimes I can manage enough anger from other places to pretend, but I just don’t. I am so sad for you, so scared for you, and still posses so much love. It makes me feel weak and powerless, and I find in you another reason to hate myself.

When you finally come online I waste no time setting the stage. You were odd today, is anything wrong. Did something happen last night. What’s bothering you. Slowly my questions descend into very obvious implications that I know what I’m looking for, yet you still deny. Over and over, you deny.

I don’t want to give up what feels like my only leverage. I don’t want to negate my power position by letting you know that I just fucking laid there petrified and let you fucking touch me and breathe on me and fondle my tits and who knows what else before I woke up. But I am a creature of gratification, and I simply can’t allow this to die without your confession.

What would you say if I told you I were awake?

The same.

How?

Because I have to.

You leave. For months you go away to be head shrunk and cured. You tell your family you raped me, and they don’t believe you. I don’t believe you. Your therapist doesn’t believe you. It was something else. You couldn’t have raped me because I still want your friendship, because you didn’t force your cock in me.

I am waiting for you to come back so we can mend things and go back to the way things were, talking on IRC for hours upon hours about everything and nothing. I don’t realize it, but another brick in the wall is set by your abandonment.

I suddenly come into the habit of thinking about you when I masturbate. I’d done it once or twice before to see how it would feel, but it was awkward and without climax. But now, it’s different. Now I’m angry. Now I am pissed the fuck off. And now I know how to satisfy it.

We are at your parents house in Santa Rosa watching a movie. You’re on the couch, I’m on the floor kneeling in front of you. You tell me no. I don’t listen. Neither does your crotch. I pull all my best moves as you protest between extended periods of paralyzed submission in which you’re too terrified to move. I groan that you wanted this while breathing hot through your pants. Your head falls back onto the back of the couch as you let out a devastated whine before beginning to silently cry.

The way your tears stream silently into your hair is exactly how I cried while at the dentists office with a raging jaw infection that threatened my life after spreading to the back of my neck. After getting a root canal in which the dentist rested his hand on my infection-gorged jaw the entire procedure, I had become entranced from the pain.

There was no motion, no sobbing, no resistance. I laid in that dentists chair while tears silently whispered from the corners of my eyes into my soaked hair in defeated silence while I went through the most painful event of my life. In reward for my will my bottom lip was eventually pulled away from my jaw so a scalpel could be jammed into my chin and tablespoon after tablespoon of yellow cottage cheese was massaged from my face and neck into my mouth and throat while I choked. I have never experienced pain to that degree of transcendence in my life since.

And here you are. Crying like I was that day. For me.

Your tears incite no mercy. Once snaked through your zipper I immediately mount and force you into me, glaring at you. You whisper for me to please stop. Please don’t. I hold your shoulders to the back of the couch and start systematically drilling down, pulling up. You wanted this. You wanted this so bad you decided to take it without asking. You’ll get what you want. And you’ll never want it again.

As your orgasm mounts you fight back more aggressively, like a man being drowned in a body of water, gripping at my face under my jaw trying to push me away from you. I continually outsmart you and pin your hands. Eventually the distraction gets the better of you and you relent to your fate, whimpering and sobbing as I feel you come inside my fantasy as I come in reality.

I feel a surge of power rush through me. It outweighs my hate, my love, my fears, my guilt, my confusion. It outweighs everything. It feels amazing. I feel amazing. I am amazing. And you, are ruined. Ruined forever like I was supposed to be ruined by you.

I don’t feel right about the fantasy. About the hate. But it feels so good to fuck myself thinking of forcing myself on you, I don’t stop. It becomes my staple sexual outlet, and perhaps the way I cope with your absence as well as your deeds.

Your return is confusing, upsetting, distant. You don’t want much to do with me. I feel like I’ve done something wrong, and try to tell you that I forgive you. I don’t care what happened, and over the course of your stay I’ve realized that it was bound to no matter what based on our relationship dynamic. It was no ones fault. Please take me back. So good to see you. I’ve missed you so much. So glad it’s over.

But my friend is gone. What was left of my innocence is gone. I am left with only change, disappointment, and a newfound hate for my always-apparent sensuality and appeal.

My hopeless romance, my quest for someone to love me, my openness and honesty about wanting that, wanting affection, and hoping that some day I will find someone to take my sex and do right by it, already battered and broken from others before you, withers and dies.

My fantasies of entangled limbs, soft kisses, gentle thrusts and whisperings of sweet nothings no longer excite me. Thoughts of being made love to, being brought to orgasm, gone down upon with tender care, are dry and fruitless. Now I have a cock. Sometimes I make myself suck it. Sometimes I fuck dead girls with it. Sometimes I let the object of my affection borrow it so I can feel him come for me, in me, on me.

The power in surrender and trust is gone. I now understand that sex doesn’t have to sadden me, make me feel used, be abusive, be scary, be submissive, force me to allow anyone inside any part of me ever again. My sex is power, my sex is no longer a shameful burden or a curse that makes me feel inappropriate, haunted, exposed. Harnessing it makes me the most powerful person on earth.

Now I have taken control.

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

They can’t all be masterpieces.

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

My jaw is bruised, from practicing too much with a solid-bodied electric violin. Fucker’s heavy. Oh, also; I am learning to play violin. Heh

Reality check

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

The word rape is often associated with a violent assault by a stranger. Although that does happen, the majority of sexual assaults look a bit more like this. What do you see?

Sunday, September 12th, 2010

ER visit: expensive, Time off work: Expensive, Medications: Not as expensive as I thought, Waking up ravenous after 15 hours of sleep and sniffing out a 2 day old double chocolate trophy cupcake sitting on my desk and eating the fucking shit out of that fucker: Priceless.

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

Kitchen knife through the thumbnail

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Ah HA! It is not massaging that is messing my wrist up (which was confusing the hell out of me, because I haven’t changed anything I’ve been doing). It’s chopping so many vegetables!

“While you were gone” – Hell hath no fury.

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008

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I am displeased.

I’ve allowed myself to remain deeply involved with someone who claims not to be ‘dating’ anyone, who categorizes me as a ‘friend’ along with everyone else in his life. I’ve allowed him to hide behind semantics and phrasing that I’ve known are bullshit to enable himself to enjoy me and another woman who also considers herself to be in a relationship with him. I’ve allowed for his selfish, dishonest, and often utterly ridiculous reactions to make me question my sanity, my motives, to feel controlling, out of line and unhinged – just as he’s hoped they would.

Even though I have been clear from the start where I stood in regards to multiple relationships in relation to ours, I have not stood my ground. I have allowed for his actions and my own to damage me over and over, as I quietly read books about strengthening the bonds between lovers, searching for new ways to connect and show affection toward him.

I’ve acted such a fool.

I’ve been operating under the constructs of a romantic relationship with this man, giving and receiving much more than I have ever given any supposed ‘friend’, based on whispers of manipulative assurance and lies of omission (and often outright lies) that didn’t line up with his actions at all. I’ve done this all in the name of growth and consciousness expansion while he’s lied point blank to my face and been insincere, greedy and dishonest for months, perhaps longer. How utterly irresponsible of me.

He’s recently told me I am the love of his life, declined advances from people by declaring that his heart belongs to me and has for a long time, and has been sleeping with me. We’ve talked of babies and marriage and remain bonded in chemistry thick enough I can barely see through it. Even as I have sought to end romantic relations with him he’s consistently resisted and acted out in protest. Yet, I am assured to be a ‘friend’ to him, to someone who is clear about having strong feelings for him with whom he has recent history. It’s been a source of profound tension and distress for me, and I’ve often felt insulted.

I kept telling myself to be a ‘bigger’ person and to accept things how they were, even though they were hurtful. I wrote numerous pep talks for myself about growing past what I wanted, what I felt was right for me, changing my standards. It was all bullshit. I allowed his constant refusal to listen to me about this to mean that my feelings must have been wrong. That the respect, and the honesty I wanted was wrong.

I am hurt by the mixed signals, distressed and suspicious of the vagueness, and I always have been. I am angry about the defensive wall that is put up every time I’ve attempted to address this triad with him – even simply that it exists. I am saddened and confused by the inconsistency with which he represents our relationship. I am frustrated by his persistent unwillingness to recognize my feelings, my warnings, about these discomforts I’ve had, even when I’ve been in tears over them.

I’ve been met with a constant standoff about any details regarding his relationship with her. I am furious with his resistence to owning his actions as precipitating the tensions between the three of us, and his excuses. I am sick of being lead on and sick of watching him lead her on like we’re both fucking stupid.

I’ve been involved in a shadow what I want for myself since he approached me in April wanting to rebuild our relationship. I’ve trusted that whatever we ended up having would build trust and strength and be celebrated honestly and be protected. That’s not the case, and it hasn’t been for a long time. I’ve been utterly played.

And yet there I’ve been, still giving this guy my all, gut wrenched and walking on eggshells.

It’s always something, isn’t it. A mutual interest. A book. A text message from across the country. Some clothes. I break free, but there is always something to grapple to, and get the hooks back in me.

Enough. I’m finished being this person.

EDIT: Turns out he’s been fucking us both consistently for a year, and is also screwing someone else he’s been lying to us about. Awesome.