Fall 2022

Over the Labor Day weekend Mr. Trouble and his family went camping at his in-law’s place. He and his son came home without his wife on Sunday and I was very surprised to hear from him, expecting they’d have camped through the holiday on Monday. Apparently camping got rough and he needed to vent about his wife’s behavior. He very rarely talks about her at all to me and can’t even bring himself to use her name when texting me, just uses her initial. That never made sense to me, but I suppose guilt shows itself in strange ways. Tonight he got in to far more detail than ever before and I was deeply conflicted, unsure how to best support him. Do I be the supportive friend who just listens? The wise friend who gives sound advice in an attempt to help? That one I genuinely couldn’t stomach. What about the honest friend who is deeply protective of children and has secretly judged him harshly for a very long time knowing there were issues with how his wife treats his son? How could he have married someone who isn’t good to his son!? I finally learned he didn’t, the issues between the two were new about a year prior. So when they married she had been good to his son. That made much more sense, but I still barely held back the need to tell him he should’ve given her an ultimatum a YEAR AGO when she started treating his son poorly. I held that back by the skin of my teeth and yet he still went on to tell me he didn’t think he could take it much longer. That’s when something inside of me *broke*.

I had a panic attack suddenly thinking for the first time there was even a small chance that he might realistically leave his wife. I’m a hopeless romantic at heart and I can’t deny having had fantasies I could never totally banish about myself and Mr. Trouble, but I always knew without a doubt that they were fantasies only and had nothing at all to do with reality. I relied on knowing he is married to help me feel safe. Unfortunately my feeling of having some control went out the window with that single text and to compound my difficulties, I didn’t recognize that what I was feeling was a panic attack so I was not able to manage it as well as I typically do. I really do love everything about Mr. Trouble, even his many and deep flaws. But the way I love his voice is something in unto itself. We’d had phone sex exactly once before, more than a year prior. And honestly it wasn’t great phone sex lol, there really was very little talking and it didn’t last long as we both got off in separate beds hours apart. But just hearing him, hearing his breathing over the phone and what little talking there was at the beginning pushed me so damn high! It was different this time, it was so much better. We actually talked, and talked, and TALKED for over 40 minutes! We were both masturbating, both wanting one another. It was late and he had his son at home with him, it felt like the 35 minute drive separating us might as well have been galaxies away. As our conversation continued he started professing that he couldn’t cum and telling me he needs me. I remember truly feeling bad for him as both of our desperation built and he was more and more insistent asking me to see him. I did something I’d never done before and called him ‘baby’ not a typical endearment of mine but he sounded as miserable wanting me as I felt without him. I kept protesting that we couldn’t because his son was home, but my endurance was eroding far more rapidly than I ever could have imagined listening to him practically begging for me. In hindsight I blame the toll the panic attack was taking on me, but I finally did something I never could have imagined I’d be capable of and relented! I told him he’d have to give me time to shower before I headed his way and I wasn’t all that quick about it. About 45 minutes later I was ready to go and sent him a text asking if he was sure, he indicated he was. I made a conscious choice to set aside my judgment which said this was absolutely WAY too dangerous and trust his, which said that his son was deep asleep at the other end of the house and we could get away with my being there to hook up. So I went.

We weren’t caught by his son, however I struggled over the next couple of weeks wrestling with anxiety attacks for the first time in many months. I was suddenly TERRIFIED of losing Mr. Trouble and no matter how I looked at it, all roads led to that eventuality. I even felt fearful about my rock solid relationship with Mr. Trustworthy, which is I think what finally tipped me off that there was something bigger going on here which I had yet to diagnose. As tempting as it was to simply RUN, I knew that was an old defense mechanism and resisted, choosing instead to be an adult and have an honest conversation with Mr. Trouble.

9/13/22 11:06 am

Hey handsome, I’m going to be in town Thursday and Friday. Any chance you’d have time for coffee?

I’m in New Hampshire

Oh wow, didn’t realize that was this week. How’s it going?

Pretty well….. Just landed getting luggage.

When’s your presentation?

If you have any down time while you’re gone and wanna talk feel free to give me a call :*

Friday morning. Will do….

I never did ask how presenting your business plan went I don’t think

It went pretty well…. Just woke up.

Good morning handsome

That’s great! Friday will go well too I have no doubt

Glad you got to sleep in a little today 🙂

Me too….

(audio recording of me masturbating, moaning Mr. Trouble’s name and cumming)

NSFW 😈😘

So you listened to what I sent you huh? 😀

It was beautiful

I’m glad you enjoyed it! Not sure why but inspiration struck 🙂

That is both true and not true to be completely honest…meeting for coffee has become the ritual when Mr. Trouble and I need to discuss something that I feel the need to talk about in person, including when I stopped sleeping with him due to his drinking and admitted to him that his drinking was terrifying me. So, asking to meet for coffee is our equivalent of the phrase, ‘We need to talk.’ While it’s true that inspiration struck and the idea was unexpected, I do have some idea as to why…having asked to meet for coffee only to discover Mr. Trouble was currently out of the state for work I didn’t want him stressed or worried that I was going to break up with him again. I was looking for ways to reassure him that everything was okay between us without directly SAYING that to him as I knew there would be consequences once I said my peace. Perhaps an audio recording of me getting off and moaning his name was a *bit* overkill!? Lol.

9/20/22 8:31 am

Any chance you’d have time for coffee this week?

I think tomorrow is pretty open

I have a massage in town from 10-11:30a, before or after that?

How about before? Do you just want to come by my house?

That sounds good

What time?

How about 9a?

Sounds good! I like when I get to see you more frequently 😘

God therapy SUCKS!!! Lol. Ugh. Two steps forward one step back 8| but progress not perfection [[[shrug]]]

I’m excited to see you tomorrow

Me tooooo! I do want to actually talk with you tho lol cuz I’ve been struggling a bit lately and I’m hoping talking will help

Ok

I don’t want to keep running when things scare me, never works anyway!

😘

You light up my life

I hope you know that 🙂 💙

I do!

How’s your day going?

Moderately, productive. I’ve just been catching up with people in the office today.

I wondered if you’d be buried after traveling last week

I tried to keep up on email until traveling on Saturday. Just this past weekend and Monday I had 70 emails to get to this morning.

Your job sucks. Thank you for doing it and doing it well!

I enjoy it a lot.

I know, I’m so glad. I love seeing you light up

Tho I was curious when you started to say be…and changed it to lifestylegambler cuz it clearly wasn’t going to be lifestyle gambler lol

[first name] + [last name] = be….. That’s my best guess…lol.

Wanna know a secret?

Of course!

I was super disappointed I didn’t end up being able to tell you in person when I switched to using [last name] because I couldn’t bring myself to tell you via text what I’d planned to tell you in person…I love hearing you cal me [first name]. You’re literally the only person that I feel seen as who I really am when you say my name. The only down side to switching to [last name] for me was knowing you’d make an effort to call me [last name] and I’d need to let you cuz it would draw attention if you continued using [first name] when I was introducing myself as [last name] etc. bt it’s always made me feel *seen* when you’ve used my name

When everyone else calls me [last name] I get a similar feeling now and it feels really good

But I always loved hearing you call me [first name]

You were also the only person I was excited to tell about the change, literally everyone else I was nervous to tell

Not with you 😘💙

🙂

So that’s my way of saying thank you for being you 😍

Awwww…. I struggle being me sometimes…..lol. I feel I can be better sometimes….

I know exactly what you mean and I feel the same way. But life is about exploring, learning and growing, right? Progress not perfection. Be kind to yourself because life isn’t easy and we all do the best we can with the tools we have in the circumstances in which we find ourselves. And you have always been there when I needed you

You have such a big heart and you care so deeply and that’s not easy

I’ve been super impressed the last few months seeing you making an effort to do better in so many ways

Change is scary but can be so worth it

I’m grateful you’ve let me in and confide in me so much more than you used to

I like getting to feel like you can lean on me too at least once in a while

And just for the record I learned all those things through YEARS of brutal therapy lol it didn’t come easy

And it still is a struggle which is why I’m always reminding myself progress not perfection

Thank you…

I’ll always be on your side if you let me. I respect and admire you, but for me the even bigger deal is that I trust you, pretty deeply. I didn’t give that trust away, you’ve earned every ounce of it. You haven’t been perfect but neither have I. You’ve respected boundaries I’ve set when I needed to and you’ve let me be your friend even when I said not to more intimate activities. I trust you and that means the most to me. I think you have an idea of how tough trust is for me but I’m not afraid of trusting you

Wanting to do/be better is NOT a bad thing, it’s a great thing! Just like me and my riding skills, if I didn’t want to be better I never would’ve improved. Wanting more is the result of caring

It’s okay to start wherever you’re at. Wanting to be better takes strength of character

Its not about when you fall down or where you began, it’s where you choose to go with your life and YOU get to choose

Therapy is a huge part of how I manage that same desire to want to be better, it has worked well for me when I find the right person 🙂

You give so much of yourself to [organization], students, instructors, you always give your all and I love that about you

But we all have areas in our lives with which we struggle. That’s okay

It doesn’t make you weak or in an way worth LESS

It’s much harder to acknowledge we can improve in areas than it would be to ignore it

Make sense?

I appreciate your perspective.

Even if you don’t *believe* it does it at least make sense in your head?

I get that feelings don’t always match what we think lol

It does.

I’m glad. Hopefully it helps knowing that’s how I see it and how I see you. I believe in you and trying your best is all you can ask of yourself and all I try to expect of myself and others but can be tough to remember

Oh check this out 😍

screenshot of conversation with another instructor:

Hey [instructor], this is LG. I just wanted to thank you again for the last couple days. You are so kind and caring and I know it takes effort to call me [last name] now after using [first name] for years. That effort means so much to me and I’m just really grateful I Have the opportunities to get coached by you and get to know you better. Truly, thank you for all you do!!! You rock 🙂

Thank you. We are blessed. You have come a long way. Your indefatigable attitude inspires me

Thank you, that means so much to me. I work hard at the things I love and I love to be challenged but I know I owe every skill and enjoyable time on two wheels to [organization] and I also feel very blessed to have had the opportunities [organization] and amazing people like you have given me. Truly a special organization but I just wanted you to know that I think the world of you!

Neat!

I thought that would make you smile 🙂

Definitely made me smile!

Can’t wait to see you and finally be able to touch you!!! It was not easy distracting myself from you the last couple days lol

😂😍😘

Finally cuddled up to [instructor] cuz I was too exhausted to keep myself under control! Lol. I’m waaaaaay more physically affectionate than is good for me EMOJI

You make me smile

Mmmm I’m very glad! Making you smile is one of my favorite things in the world 💙

When I saw him the next morning part of me knew this could truly be the last time and I clung to him. Everything about him just FITS, being in his arms is such a *relief*. I was there to talk and I tried to moderate things and not get too carried away, for some reason I’d thought it would be better to get the talking part out of the way before we got naked. I FAILED! Lol. And I just could NOT keep my mouth shut apparently because I remember admitting at one point while he was going down on me, “I can’t decide if I was more embarrassed or turned on when I listened to that recording before I sent it to you and realized that I came the INSTANT I let myself moan your name!” He was a bit too occupied to respond verbally lol but I definitely got the impression he’d heard me loud and clear lol. Once we’d gotten dressed he said something indicating to me he was initiating saying goodbye.

“I’m not leaving before we talk.”

“What are we talking about?”

“I’ll tell you if you let me sit down.”

Only, he made no move to relocate. I’m not sure exactly what I had in mind…I can’t imagine sitting in his living room filled with pictures of him and his wife and sayings about home and love and I don’t know exactly what (because what little I picked up from passing glances the few times I’ve been in his house was always more than enough to make me feel sick) and confessing my love there. If I’d truly wanted to sit I could’ve climbed back up on his bed, but at this point his sheets *definitely* needed washed lol and just being so close to him and having as much physical contact as we did with me standing there in his arms, after a moment of just breathing and gathering my courage I went ahead and took the leap I’d been planning, knowing that one way or another things would never be the same.

Getting ghosted finally caught up with me and I’ve been having anxiety attacks. I wouldn’t have believed our mutual friend was capable of doing that to me, so It kicked up my PTSD, particularly trust and abandonment issues regarding those with whom I’m closest. 

Earlier this year I talked with you about changing my mindset from fearing each time I saw you would be the last to assuming you’re going to continue to be in my life in the future. That worked great for a while, but lately I feel like we’ve been building deeper trust and better communication and I realized that now I’m terrified, one way or another, I’m going to lose you eventually. 

I’m in love with you; I love every part of you. I’ve been hesitant to say that for a lot of reasons, but the most important one was fear of making you feel pressured in any way. I’m tired of fear and I wanted you to hear me say it: I love you and I don’t want to lose you. I really hope admitting that to you isn’t a mistake. I’m not asking you for anything and I don’t need anything from you, I just wanted you to know what’s been going on with me.

‘Thank you for sharing’ he responds. I lean my forehead against his, close my eyes and just breathe for a moment. But I can’t resist long and my lips are on his as my hands slide into his hair, onto his jaw, drinking him in. The thing is, standing there between his legs as he sat on the side of his bed, my arms looped around his neck, looking down into his eyes as I spoke, I SAW the joy flash across his face when I finally confessed my love. I really didn’t expect him to say it back, and I’m not totally sure I would’ve even wanted him to…it might’ve just HURT to hear him say it to my face, I don’t know. Would I have believed it was genuine? Would it have seemed forced for felt coerced? There are just SO many ways it could’ve gone bad had he said it back, I was perhaps relieved that he didn’t. Clearly he isn’t the only coward! Soon we said goodbye and went about our routines. I so badly wanted to text him but I resisted, and I’m glad I did considering what he had to say when I next heard from him two days later.

Fri Sept 23 2022 6:05p

Sorry I’ve been so quiet the last few days, but I’ve been thinking about you and what you said a lot….. It hit me pretty hard and I realized the feelings that were developing… The last thing I want to do is to hurt you…. I just didn’t want to say it back and then pull back… I don’t deserve to be with you, and you need someone that can spend the time with you that you need…. You are a good person and I don’t want to put you in any awkward position… I’m very impressed with you this year. I can tell you are working on you a lot, and it’s inspiring me…

11:24 pm

There’s plenty I could say to that but I’m not clear on your expectations going forward…I’ve always told you I’d let you be the moment you say the word. I can be out of your life completely other than when I need my boss. Is that the plan?

Finally, on 10/6/22 I sent him an email to his work email address with the subject ‘Issue’ saying:

Hey boss,

I need to talk to you at your earliest convenience. Would you please give me a call when you can?

The sad thing is I wasn’t even sure he’d respond, hence the need to sort this shit out! A few hours later he did indeed give me a call, and the conversation went something like this…

You can do whatever you want with your personal life and it’s FINE if we’re not friends, but I need to know if I can trust you as my boss. I never thought I’d have to ask that question but you were out of line ignoring me when I asked about future communication between us. I HAD to ask that BECAUSE you are still my boss. It didn’t matter how you answered but ignoring me completely broke my trust in you as my boss. This may not be fair, but I know you and I KNOW you make unpredictable and often poor decisions when you get emotional and now I’m afraid that could affect how you treat me as an employee, which is a serious problem. I’ve applied for a couple of jobs and right now I’m not sure how you would handle it if someone called for a reference.

Have I ever given you reason not to trust me as your boss?

Not until you didn’t respond to that text.

I didn’t know how to respond and I didn’t think we talked about work over text.

LOL. I’ve said this over and over again, and I KNOW you never heard me, but texting about work was never an issue. The problem was when you text me about potential *issues* with work, that’s the only thing I requested that you not text me about. I figured you’d have picked up by now on the fact that when I use the word ‘boss’ I’m making a point. I knew you probably wouldn’t know the answer to that question right away so it didn’t seem fair to ask you over the phone and obviously I wasn’t going to email you when the question wouldn’t have come up were it not for our personal relationship, so I text you to give you time to respond. But it’s been two weeks and if I’m going to continue teaching I have to know that I can still rely on you if I need my boss. When I sent you that email I honestly didn’t even know if you’d respond, and that’s a problem.

You’re right, I’m sorry.

I realize now that in his mind my question was personal rather than work related, and that’s understandable considering our complex relationship. I forgave him easily and when he continued to express remorse I assured him that it was in the past, he and I are good and to just let it go and move on. Luckily I’ve never been shy about confronting him as my boss! Lol. However, the conversation lingered and several times attempted to move off on tangents that were decidedly personal and I kept hearing myself having to say things like, ‘…but that’s not a conversation we need to have.’ and refocusing on the point from which we’d wandered. It’s easy to tell we both still enjoy talking with one another and its just SO DAMN HARD to say goodbye, end the conversation and actually HANG UP! But we eventually managed and I felt much better which was a welcome relief.

The week of October 10, 2022 one of the office staff who usually handles everything to do with instructor class assignments was out of the office and, you guessed it! Mr. Trouble was filling in for her. I communicate with her quite a bit, but not on a weekly basis and yet of course I had at least THREE entirely different things come up that week which would usually be handled by her, putting me in contact with Mr. Trouble via email multiple days. I hate the pleasure I experience every time knowing that, at least for a few minutes, he will be forced to think about me. I don’t want to care!!! We didn’t talk any more than necessary and everything was 100% on topic and yet just knowing he’d have to think about me for even the small amount needed to handle work things going on made me happy 😦

A few weeks later was our organization’s annual award banquet, when instructors from all over the state come together and this year was the first time it was held in person in years due to COVID. I did *not* want to attend for so many reasons, just starting with my hope to never be anywhere with Mr. Trouble, his wife, Mr. Trustworthy and HIS WIFE! Sounds like my idea of Hell for sure. The week before the banquet our director contacted me to ask about some video I’d taken of instructor only classes and I sent him options so he could include real video in the presentation. He seemed personally affronted when I told him I wasn’t going to be at the banquet and when he asked why I gave him the lowest priority reason on my long list, that COVID is still a thing, I’m immunocompromised and still fighting off viral bronchitis. All true just a shallow truth lol.

Nov. 7th, 2022, Monday after the banquet, I got an email from our director Mr. Trouble’s boss:

Hi LG,

Thanks again for the videos you sent. I used one of them at the banquet, and it went great. Sorry we missed you. Perhaps you can make it next year.

PS – I credited you with attending 19 classes! A record I believe.

Between my heightened emotions still plaguing me from the banquet the other night and the Director’s mention of the future, I suddenly realized he likely doesn’t know about my hands. So, I responded:

Hey [Director],

I’m glad you were able to use one of the videos! I’d hope most of our instructors wouldn’t need to work that hard on their skills lol but I’m grateful for how much I improved 🙂 I had so little control last fall when I finally was able to ride again I knew enough to be scared for my safety. 19 classes and numerous rides with other instructors helped me build better skills than I ever expected to have!

I’ve had a couple discussions with Mr. Trouble the past few months but my time with [organization] is rapidly coming to a close. I’m losing the use of my hands due to a disease and it has progressed dramatically this year, so I won’t be able to ride much longer at all and I’m not even sure I’ll be able to make it through the training season teaching next year because I won’t be able to pick up cones or hold my cards. I’ll get in as much as I can before that happens but there isn’t any treatment and there are obvious limits to how much accommodations can be made as I lose the use of my hands. I hate to disappoint you but thought I’d warn you in case you weren’t aware. 

I’ve known for many years I’d lose the use of my hands at an early age but I am grateful beyond words for the opportunities [organization] has given me and the chance to live my passion as long as possible. I hope you enjoyed the banquet! Saying goodbye to [organization] will be extremely hard but I will always be grateful for the impact on me personally and knowing such good people are still out there fighting the good fight!

Best,

LG

I’d hoped by mentioning I’d talked with Mr. Trouble the Director would leave my boss out of it, but no such luck…

Hi LG,

I’m so sorry to hear about the health challenge you’re confronting. It saddens me to no end. I’m also reflecting on your eagerness to ride and enthusiasm for [organization], and, I must say, I have tremendous respect for you. While many would have succumbed to despair, you fully embraced what you love.

Please let us know how we can best serve you as you manage the limitations you address. I’m including copying Mr. Trouble, so he’s aware as well.

All the very best.   

Well FML. I couldn’t not respond to a message like that, but any response would likely draw attention if I didn’t CC Mr. Trouble. In theory I could’ve just shot off a quick acknowledgment/thank you type of thing directly back and not CC’ing Mr. Trouble would’ve made sense, but that’s not who I am! I needed to say more, and apparently I couldn’t resist the temptation knowing Mr. Trouble would also be reading this email thread…

You are very kind, [Director]. I’m sorry to have saddened you, I just wanted you to know what to expect when I realized you were likely unaware of my circumstances. 

[organization] has always supported me above and beyond my expectations and as I said, I have discussed this with Mr. Trouble and kept him in the loop. I’ll be around both riding and teaching as long as I’m able and when I have to let go and say goodbye, I will do so truly grateful for the time I did get to have. I believe things happen for a reason so although I don’t want to close this chapter, I will work to find what’s next for me and I’ll always have wonderful memories and amazing people I’ve been lucky enough to get to know thanks to [organization]. I wouldn’t trade what I’ve been lucky enough to experience for anything. The pain of loss is natural when one cares deeply and truly, nothing lasts forever. I’ve chosen to embrace opportunities knowing I was against the clock and don’t regret doing so!  

Also as a side note, the effort everyone has put forth in honoring my request to change to going by [last name] rather than [first name] has meant more to me than I could ever put in to words. Thank you. 

With gratitude,

LG

I’ve been so tied up in knots I’m struggling to sleep. I miss him…I know, you’re SHOCKED! It’s not like that last email is screaming my longing and feelings of loss *at ALL*. I just couldn’t resist what felt like my last real chance to say goodbye and that I love him, particularly as my feelings about losing the ability to ride a motorcycle or even continue teaching classes for much longer are so similar. Nine weeks sounds like a not insubstantial length of time, and yet I feel like the pain is just getting worse. There was so much I wanted to say in response to the break up text he sent me (at least the THIRD time he’d called things off via *text* the damn coward!) but they were things I only had a right to say as a friend, and I had a hunch we weren’t going to be friends anymore so I refrained in an attempt to respect his wishes and instead sought to clarify…much easier to respect someone’s boundaries when you know what they are! Except the break up text is the last thing he ever sent me. It’s hardly unusual for him to use silence as a means of communication and I am about killing myself resisting the urge to reach out…I guess I technically (?) failed given that email I CC’d him on, but I can’t bring myself to regret it. I do wish I felt that I had a better handle on my motives. Am I trying to prompt him to reach out? We both know that even if we aren’t sleeping together or sexting we still have deep feelings for one another, so being ‘just friends’ has never been achievable no matter how many times we’ve tried.

I miss the friendship, although to be honest that was true even during the prior months when things were going so well with us. He just doesn’t have much time for me I guess, but that’s confusing because we used to talk every day, at least in the morning when he did have time. So it felt like the change was that talking with me was no longer a priority rather than that he truly didn’t have enough time…it feels like we only talked when he was horny or stressed out and needed someone but it was no longer a two way street. He had no idea what was going on in my life and really never even asked anymore. But the truth is I don’t know, can’t know for sure. He has a family, a BIG job and summer is the busy time of year so I wanted to believe he didn’t have enough time and I constantly tried to convince myself it was this rather than me not being a priority. Even so, I backed WAY off on how frequently I reached out/text him honestly just in an attempt to wean myself off of how dependent I felt I’d been on him for so long. I don’t know, maybe in a way I was testing him too, seeing what the relationship would look like if I didn’t do the majority of the work/initiation? Things *were* good, he did NOT do anything wrong or mess up or hurt me in any way, but he wasn’t present in my life as I longed for him to be or even as much as he had been at times in the past. This dramatic shift was confusing for me.

I ended up emailing Mr. Trouble at work Friday 11/18/22:

Subject: [Braking Clinic] Question

Good afternoon,

I’m stalking the master schedule so I can put advanced classes in my phone to keep in mind and had to ask…is the [braking clinic] in ******* on 8/6/23 another high speed instructor only braking clinic??? Cuz if it is I’m blocking that date out on my keep out dates RIGHT NOW! Lol.

Thanks!!!

LG

Subject: RE: {Braking Clinic] Question

Yes, it is! I’m excited for it already, too! I’m planning on announcing the same format as last year in February this year, so we can get a little more participation with this campout and the braking clinic. I hope you are doing well. Sorry, I missed you at the banquet.

The best,

Mr. Trouble

Subject: RE: [Braking Clinic] Question

Yay! I’m super excited, hopefully my hands hold out long enough for me to get to do it one more time! I’m doing great and I’ll definitely attend next year but I had other plans that night this year. I hope you’re doing well also 🙂 AND if you’re responsible for the [Advanced Class]’s so early in the year next year, THANK YOU!!!!! I can’t wait for classes to start up again since I don’t have any more this year. …not sure if I can top teaching 24 and taking 19 but I’m looking forward to giving it a go 😉 Now I just need the *one* ******* cornering clinic to not get rained out on me again next year and I’ll have checked the big ones off my list 😀

Cheers,

LG

Mr. Trouble didn’t know about my life-altering surgery that I had 11/15/22, which was a big part of why I was in such a great mood when composing the above emails. I truly wasn’t exaggerating, at the time I did feel great. But given the tenor of the last email I sent that he was CC’d on and the substantial effort I put in to composing the doublespeak to communicate entirely different messages to him and our director I couldn’t help but wonder about his reaction, if he’d believe me, if he’d wonder if I’m missing him, if he’d think about me at all or if I was just another email for him to get through and forget.

There are things I’ve never done with Mr. Trouble, lines I just couldn’t trust him enough to cross. I had so many unanswered questions, so many what ifs. Some fantasies certainly, but it was never really about the sex because that was always great. It was about wanting to build intimacy and explore our connection deeper, wondering what it might be like if he actually treated me well, didn’t do anything to hurt me. I’ve never taken a selfie with him. This saddens me, but I couldn’t handle one existing. I suppose I also feared he’d say no if I asked him, but I kind of doubt that. It’s just, having pictures of him alone makes my breath catch in my chest and my whole world freeze for a moment when I get a call or a text and see his contact picture unexpectedly. A picture of the two of us, together!? Seeing such a thing would’ve been endless torture knowing we could never have anything real. I couldn’t do that to myself. I also keep secrets from Mr. Trouble. Mr. Trustworthy knows Mr. Trouble’s true identity, but I would NEVER trust Mr. Trouble with Mr. Trustworthy’s identity. I always referred to Mr. Trustworthy as my best friend when talking about him with Mr. Trouble. That’s a line I’d never have crossed. Then there are the small things, like my ridiculous affection for stuffed animals. I can’t imagine I ever would’ve been willing to share that factoid with Mr. Trouble. All that would’ve done is caused me pain knowing I’d never receive one as a gift from him even though he knew how much they mean to me. Silly and arbitrary as they may be, I had definite lines I would not cross to protect the most vulnerable parts of myself.

I don’t really have any questions left now. I suppose this has given me some degree of peace and assisted in my trying to truly let go and move on since this last break up with Mr. Trouble. I don’t think I can bring myself to describe the final times we were together, it’s just too intimate for me to expose right now, even here. But the things I’d fantasized about, I got to experience with him. We were sexually involved again for a couple of months before it ended, and everything was good the whole time. He treated me with respect. He was opening up and confiding in me more than ever before, and about topics which had been 100% off limits for discussion in the past. My #1 sexual fantasy revolving around him finally became a reality, and every instant of it was honestly fucking perfect. He was amazing. We also checked off some other wish list items we’d discussed in the past and in between he wasn’t letting me down or hurting me like he always had before. He wasn’t downing entire bottles of whiskey in hotel rooms as I’d seen him do earlier in the year. I couldn’t have been more in love with him and I believe he loved me in return.

I didn’t realize how brutal Black Friday would be this year. Last year Mr. Trouble and I spent the entire day out on our bikes for Black Friday. Our route even included the coast which I always love! The roads were empty, the weather was sunny and the pavement was ours for the taking! I had so much fun and couldn’t help but hope for a repeat in the future. I didn’t get one. And what’s worse is I all but begged for it too. A couple days before Thanksgiving I had an idea about a potential ADA accommodation that might allow me to continue teaching longer as the function in my hands continues to decrease so I sent an email to Mr. Trouble right away wanting to know if he could look in to it; he emailed me back Wednesday arguing that what I was asking for would make the cards more difficult to hold with less hand function and I gave in and called him rather than responding via email. I won’t deny that I wanted to talk to him – I always want to talk to the bastard! But I call him very rarely and typically stick to email anyway. Thing is, convincing him he’s wrong felt like it was going to be challenging at best via email and I really was excited about this idea I had to help me.

‘Hi [first name]! Sorry! [last name]’

I might not ever hear it again, but at least I got to hear him say my first name one last time. I spent several minutes laying out for him why he was wrong, until he agreed and said he’d need to talk to his boss who’s out this week but he’ll get back to me next week. I expected to end the conversation, but as always seems to happen on the phone these days, it continued on when Mr. Trouble asked, ‘how’s everything else?’ All I had to do was say, ‘Good!’ and leave it be! But nooooooooo, not lifestylgambler! My dumb ass just starts to ramble on about my personal life, talking to Mr. Trouble like I would if we were *friends*! I told him I was doing well, that I’d rather be teaching but having the time off from teaching gave me time to have a surgery I really wanted to get done so I’m recovering from that and I went on a motorcycle ride w [instructor] on Monday which was a blast. I’m a little disappointed there won’t be a repeat of how much fun I had on Black Friday last year but oh well. How about you? He seemed surprised when I asked him in return and said, ‘Oh, me? Uh, good, I guess…’ I laughed and said, ‘Okay, well if you ever need a friend you know my number. Otherwise thanks for your help with the rest.’ and we said goodbye. So yeah, I couldn’t have begged much more than that for him to want to be friends again, to ride with me again before I lose the use of my hands completely and we never get another chance, without feeling like I was pressuring him. I made sure he knows the door is open on my side but only if he chooses to walk through it. And of course I would feel we’d need to talk before resuming our friendship and how that went might lead to choosing to not resume it, but at least there’d be a discussion rather than the total radio silence I’ve had from him on a personal front since his break up text.

I *could* have gone to the banquet, even seriously entertained the idea of going for a few days in fact. I COULD have gone, with no date, in a gorgeous dress looking hot as hell. I COULD have shown up to be there when my name came up over and over again in recognition of all my participation and achievements this year. I would have smiled and probably had at least a couple of enjoyable conversations, but I know I would’ve felt isolated and lonely and jealous. I chose not to attend because I didn’t want to make the same mistake I made in June, going just to prove I was okay and COULD even though I’m not okay. I know that having to see him in person would’ve absolutely wrecked me emotionally. Under different circumstances that might not be the case, but at the banquet with his wife in tow PLUS Mr. Trustworthy and his wife being there? It would’ve been WAY too much for how raw I was feeling. Hopefully next year the banquet won’t feel so overwhelming – it was a struggle last year too and it was VIRTUAL!!! But next year will be my last chance to attend and my best chance to say goodbye to everyone as I won’t physically be able to teach the following year at this rate. I hadn’t really thought about it before but that’s why I told Mr. Trouble via email that I’d definitely attend next year. With any luck I’ll be emotionally wrecked for other reasons in 2023 lol.

I’m just ready for it to start getting easier. Which isn’t even really fair because it’s SO immeasurably much easier than a year ago or even nine months ago. But any time I need to communicate with him for work or thinking about the banquet it just ties me up in knots wanting him so badly. I guess my crystal ball is finally working because I knew he’d run when I explained how I was feeling back in September. I don’t regret being honest with him even though I basically initiated the process of losing him as I admitted just how scary that thought had become. I’m not sure if its a blessing or a curse that he’s still my boss and we will have to interact over the coming year numerous times for that reason. What scares me is what comes after I have to quit because of my hands when I’m no longer able to do this job. Will that be the last I ever hear from him? Right now it feels likely and that thought more than anything is what’s driving me to want to rekindle our friendship. I’d by lying if I said I thought I could ever be truly content being just friends, but I’m not generally a content person anyway! I’d gladly truly leave our sexual relationship in the past 100% once and for all if it meant I could still have him in my life as a friend. But I don’t have a way to appropriately communicate this to Mr. Trouble nor am I even sure that it would matter because a friendship is about TWO people, not just one, and based on his continued silence I can assume he is unwilling or unable to resume our friendship in a way that could be realistic for the two of us to manage. Which is also totally fair. We’ve never manged to stay apart before, so perhaps in this case things do have to be black and white and there’s no place at all in between. Only time will tell…

Mr. Trouble is *my* ghost story 😦

June 2022 – Joker Ain’t The Only Fool

Things with Mr. Trouble were really good for months, as hard as that might be to believe! I still fear it was manipulative when I stopped sleeping with him because of his alcoholism, but I know in my head I was protecting myself and putting my needs first which was healthy. But even as afraid as I was due to Mr. Trouble’s drinking, I refused to abandon him and our friendship continued. I made an effort to support and love him as much as possible without crossing any lines, building him up and being a shoulder on which he could lean. I continued working hard on myself in therapy and feeling that paying off. We were really talking with sex off the table and I watched, amazed, as he pulled himself out of the dangerous downward spiral he’d been in. While I’d certainly have preferred he stopped drinking entirely, he DID get it under control. He made changes throughout his life and was truly fighting to do better. He was working less, actually taking holidays off! Even making time to golf, something he’s loved his whole life. I was beyond impressed and proud of him, after all, right in front of my eyes he was doing what H couldn’t even *attempt* and fighting for himself.

By the time the weekend to **** rolled around on June 24th I’d all but given up fighting against us. I was in love with him and he was practically begging to be with me again. The fact that we weren’t having sex any longer, hadn’t even been sexting or anything, didn’t feel like it actually mattered. He was still betraying his vows – in fact I think having real feelings is much worse than sex. I had so much fun with him when we’d take our bikes out, and even just texting and talking. I was holding him accountable for how he treated me and for the first time he was actually communicating effectively with me. We were closer than ever.

When I decided to go to **** I didn’t know his wife would be there. I was tempted to skip going because I was unraveling beneath the effort of not holding him in my arms, it just HURT so fucking much to not be able to touch him. He suggested I stay with him Sunday evening after finally telling me his wife would be there Friday & Saturday night. I agreed, then made plans to do the couple hour ride to **** with him Friday afternoon…which involved going about 40 minutes in the wrong direction to meet up with him first lol. I made a new playlist for the trip, one which only included songs about him that make me happy. A playlist of songs reflecting me accepting how deeply in love with him I am and how transcendentally happy he makes me.

I don’t have the words to describe that ride to **** other than to say it’s the most fun I’ve EVER had on two wheels! The weather was perfect, the ride beautiful and he was absolutely RADIATING joy, so loudly I could read it in his body language while he was wearing a motorcycle helmet and full riding gear! But it’s true, that ride was without a doubt the happiest I’d ever seen him. It came to an end all too soon and as he went in to check in to his room at the hotel, I hung back in the parking lot and checked in on their app on my phone. I then lugged all my gear and overnight stuff to my room only to discover the door to my room wouldn’t open! It didn’t appear to be anything wrong with the app and I was forced to call the front desk and have them send someone to help. That person thought the battery in my door had died and said they’d send someone to replace it in the next ten minutes. Mr. Trouble then texts me offering for me to come hang out in his room for a few before he had to leave as he had work to do that evening to prepare for the class I took from him as one of the students the next afternoon. I could barely believe I had to text him and tell him I couldn’t leave my room until the batteries were addressed! I invited him to come to mine not really expecting he would necessarily, as at a minimum the employee who came with the replacement battery would then see us together…not an entirely great idea in my mind!But he took me up on the offer. The next several minutes were sheer HELL as we chatted and kept several feet between us at all times for fear of the employee arriving to find us embracing one another. In less than ten minutes someone did indeed arrive and proceeded to work for an interminable five or six minutes on my door with it partially open. Mr. Trouble clearly didn’t object to being seen in my room chatting so I let it go even though my better judgement knew I should have made him wait so we were seen together by no one. I just was so *desperate* to be close to him again after months of enforced space.

Before we rode together that day I’d asked him if being with me again would make the things he was struggling with worse and, much as is his habit, he did not directly answer. Because of this I had no intention of sleeping with him – before going back there, I needed to be sure at the very least that I wouldn’t be causing him to struggle even worse. What is that saying about no battle plan ever surviving first contact with the enemy!? The instant my door was fixed and FINALLY closed we were in one another’s arms. I could so easily just hold on to him forever. But our time was extremely limited and in no time at all I was drowning in his kiss. The bastard knows me too well and my resolve shattered within seconds when he reached under my top and started playing with my nipples excruciatingly lightly, just the barest brush of his fingertips taunting and teasing me. I was devouring his mouth in an instant, but that wasn’t anywhere near enough. He reached for my pants and I did something I’d never done before, I grabbed his hands and stopped him. He pulled back, his face suddenly worried and immediately apologized.

I absolutely could NOT accept his hands no longer touching me, so I quickly reassured him and went about undressing him! I knew he wanted me just as badly, had waited just as many long months since we’d last been intimate. He was desperate and as always, the moment I tasted him I was *lost*. It’s funny, he’s the second guy I’ve been in love with who told me he can’t usually cum from blow jobs. I of course gladly took that as a challenge in both cases lol but this time, with the clock ticking down until he had to show up for work, on my hotel bed with only him naked I finally got to feel him cum down my throat as I’d been begging for since long before we ever had sex for the first time! In spite of not cumming myself I felt relaxed and happy. I mean I was fucking DRIPPING wet but I was entirely content to simply soak in his afterglow with him. I got out of my clothes and made like an octopus I attached myself to his side so securely 😛 We probably had less than ten minutes to touch and cuddle before agreeing he had to get cleaned up and go to work.

I’m not exactly sure why I did what I did that afternoon. Mr. Trustworthy was on an off road motorcycle trip and out of cell service that week which had been tough on me. As far as he knew from the last time we’d talked before he left my relationship with Mr. Trouble was no longer a sexual one and it had been my intention to keep it that way. I feel guilty about the blow job and it was my plan to tell Mr. Trustworthy what had happened when he got back from his trip. That didn’t go exactly as planned, but that’s a story for another time. Maybe I feared that if I relented and let Mr. Trouble touch me, sink inside me, make me cum without answering my question I’d regret it later…he was already suffering so deeply, I couldn’t bear the idea of adding to his pain and I truly feared us resuming our sexual relationship might cause exactly that. But I didn’t have the strength to resist him, I was in SO MUCH PAIN staying away and then suddenly, after months of the best version of our friendship we’ve ever had, he was again in my arms. Apparently part of me thought the damage might be less if I were to give only and not receive…rather an impressive trick considering what a point Mr. Trouble makes of being a generous lover! I just couldn’t give myself to him without a direct answer to my question…nor could I deny my soul deep yearning to be with him. And all this while still feeling guilty about Mr. Trustworthy not knowing what I was up to with Mr. Trouble and knowing Mr. Trouble’s WIFE would be here in the next few hours, in his room, sleeping next to him. I can’t say she’s in my place because next to him was never *my* place, and yet I cannot deny how everything just feels right the moment we’re in one another’s orbit.

The next couple of days were profoundly lonely for me. It hurt knowing Mr. Trouble’s room number, just down the hall from me, going to sleep alone in my room and knowing his wife was next to him. I went to **** because that’s what I would’ve done if I’d been okay. I wasn’t okay without Mr. Trouble, not by a long shot. But I decided to go because I did want to take the classes that were being taught there that weekend and to, I don’t know, prove to myself I guess? That I could go, I could do it. Even with my heart breaking from not being with him for so long. I went to a late night showing of Top Gun: Maverick in IMAX at the local theater Friday night, which was a blast, even alone. The hours in between saying goodbye to Mr. Trouble and leaving for the movie were endless and poignant. Thanks to getting back to my room around 1am I was tired enough to sleep and slept in the next morning. Still I had a couple of hours to kill before heading to the class I took that afternoon – and I showed up early! I knew Mr. Trouble was teaching the morning and afternoon classes and would be there, and I had nothing to do in my cold and empty room but rest my neck which I hate doing anyway!

Saturday’s class was a blast. It was a class I’d taken before so I only received coaching once the whole time and pretty much crushed every exercise. The only real difficulty was the heat! We were in a high desert climate and with class starting at 1pm all it did was get hotter and hotter as the hours went by 😐 I was struggling a bit but I also had a great time! Sadly, class came to an end and I had nowhere to go but to return to my lonely hotel room knowing he was headed back to the same hotel, the same damn FLOOR to spend the evening with his wife. I showered and ate something and rested my neck knowing the next day was also going to be taxing. My soul was crying out in emptiness without my best friend to talk to and literally just down the hall from the other man I love who was with his wife instead of me.

Sunday was even worse. I woke up thinking I would get to see him after class was over. I did all of the usual grooming that morning and anxiously counted down the hours until the instructor only class scheduled to begin at 5pm. I forced myself to rest my neck but my body was crackling with energy, barely able to restrain myself from the forceful pull of Mr. Trouble. When it was FINALLY late enough I could get away with showing up for my class (as there was another class running immediately prior) I did so totally delighted to see Mr. Trouble and believing I’d be able to enjoy his company for the remainder of the night. Class started late but only runs a couple of hours and because it was instructors only, Mr. Trouble said at the end the director of our program had come into town and wanted to do a group dinner. I was disappointed thinking we’d be alone in a hotel room by then but agreed to go, wanting the face time with the director. I headed back to the hotel to change and wait to hear where they decided on for dinner. Only then did Mr. Trouble text me to tell me his wife’s plans had changed and she was staying that night also! Which means she was going to the dinner I’d already committed to attending. FML!!!!

Dinner was brutal. The fucking director decided at the last moment he was tired and not to show, so dinner was just myself, Mr. Trouble, his wife and three local instructors I didn’t know well. I truly couldn’t get out of there fast enough. But the next morning Mr. Trouble and I were up early and did the 3+ hour ride in the general direction of home ending at a cornering clinic, my third class as a student in three days! Now I’ve taken this exact clinic on the same track numerous times, but somehow there is still one specific curve I always struggle with. Lo and behold, Mr. Trouble gets out there to help with coaching head turns etc. and he just HAD to pick that one corner I always have a hard time with as the spot he was going to coach. So, I’m approaching that curve and realize he’s in the coaching position. Naturally I quietly *panic* afraid that if I turn my head for the curve and am looking at him, I literally won’t be able to look away! Target fixation is already a reality I struggle with at times on two wheels and always a difficulty around him…so my dumb ass apparently decides to just NOT TURN MY HEAD AT ALL! After so many classes on that course, I finally had my first ‘unplanned exit from the track’ lol but at that curve there is precious little space before one encounters a TREE! I was so close to crashing head first into the tree I had branches in my face before I was able to get my bike upright and pointed in a safe direction! Scared the crap out of Mr. Trouble which I felt bad about…I certainly didn’t exit the track or come within INCHES of crashing into a tree on purpose!!! I just literally was at my mental limit and couldn’t function with him so close to me and how sideways the weekend went from my expectations, thinking I’d get the chance to quench my need for him and then just NOT.

It ended up being nearly two weeks before I next got to see Mr. Trouble and in the meantime I needed to deal with breaking the news to Mr. Trustworthy that I was back in a sexual relationship with Mr. Trouble again :/

July 5, 2022 conversation with Mr. Trustworthy:

I made plans to see Mr. Trouble this weekend

Ya?

What are you and Mr. Trouble planning

Nothing I’d admit to anyone but you

I’m jealous

If I could make it not what it is I really would

Are you going somewhere

Not trying to pry

Just to ** Friday then down to my class in ******** Saturday morning

You’re allowed to ask, if I had an issue with answering I just wouldn’t

No secrets

No secrets

I hope you have fun

I’m a bit nervous for my class. I haven’t taught in a month…then again I’m frequently nervous before classes lol…it always disappears once I’m actually working and I do love teaching so much

I’m not sure how much else to volunteer

With me?

In response to your last text specifically

You are welcome to be totally open with me

I have fun when I’m with you. You make me happy. I get to be the best version of myself thanks to how safe I feel with you. I see him to get a break from the pain. I hate that it still hurts so much being away from him. I hate how terrified I am because of his drinking. I hate that things with him have nothing to do with you. It would be easier if it was about pushing you away or feeling like I don’t deserve you. I hate him for giving me something you can’t, that I’ve never found before I wish I’d never met him but that’s just wasted energy.

Honestly I don’t think Mr. Trouble or myself will give you what you’re looking for. You know I love you and it hurts me when I know you’re hurting.

I know. I still have serious emotional issues around my fear of abandonment, my health and a continuing lack of willingness to trust anyone enough to have a real future. Part of me wants it desperately but I’m nowhere near in a place where I’d be ready for that possibility. That’s why you’re both married. Still he sees and understands me in unique ways which sucks. I”m always hurting, I’m just not desperate like I was before. I’ve made some progress but I can’t imagine ever having *any* sense of security with him and I’ve accepted that. He could never give me what you and I have and I’m not willing to entertain anyone even if there was someone who could give me everything. So I’m here and this is my life and the people in it. There’s pain but it’s not crippling or panic attack inducing anymore and there’s love and joy and safety thanks in great part to you. I can’t see me ever allowing myself to *depend* on Mr. Trouble for anything. I depend on you constantly, you’re my rock and my sunshine on the darkest day. Unfortunately that doesn’t have much impact on the much smaller part of my life that he still occupies

Telling you I plan to or did see him hurts almost as much as not seeing him does

Please don’t worry about me. We have talked about this

Lol. I won’t worry about YOU the moment you stop worrying about ME! Worry is part of caring and in this case it isn’t worry, it’s empathy. I hurt but you knowing about my pain hurts you and you hurting hurts ME just as me hurting hurts YOU lol. You know that’s part of love. Pain is part of the deal and that’s okay to a point and our relationship is not dysfunctional due to worrying over one another so that one you are just going to have to learn to let go otherwise you’re beating your head against a wall for no reason love

Beside this is me being totally open which is what you specifically invited :*

Capiche?

Please feel free to talk to me, about anything. I want you for myself but I know I can’t.

Capiche

It helps to hear that you want me. I know you show me and I know you do but it makes me feel better when I hear you actually say it…greedy of me

I talk to you about everything love, even when it’s difficult. You’re my best friend and we both agree that’s always the top priority and I treasure that and you

I just wonder sometimes if I’m doing you a disservice by continuing to let down walls and let you in more and more

But I’m doing it anyway lol so I guess until you object or tell me it’s too much I will just keep going

Cuz I wouldn’t trade the relationship we’ve built for anything

I feel the same

You truly have allowed me to feel things I didn’t believe I’d ever have in my life, safety and security, love and trust and unconditionally

Then we’re eon the same page

I’ll always be here

You’re the only person on earth I’d believe when you say that, and I do. As will I, whatever the future may hold

I’ve got your six

I will say I would have been upset with you if I found out another way. Not that I ever would have but…

Thank you for trusting me

But the deal is no secrets. Which matters more than anything

I would never willingly betray your trust

The times I felt I did I was under extreme circumstances emotional and with my PTSD and panic attacks but I’m doing better as you know and hopefully my communication has been improving

I’m putting conscious effort into being totally honest in our relationship

Still practicing but learning I dare say!?

I wish I could say I was exaggerating for Mr. Trustworthy’s benefit in saying this, but I wasn’t…

‘I have fun when I’m with you. You make me happy. I get to be the best version of myself thanks to how safe I feel with you. I see him to get a break from the pain. I hate that it still hurts so much being away from him. I hate how terrified I am because of his drinking. I hate that things with him have nothing to do with you. It would be easier if it was about pushing you away or feeling like I don’t deserve you. I hate him for giving me something you can’t, that I’ve never found before. I wish I’d never met him but that’s just wasted energy.’

What does it mean that I can be in love with both of them, in such different ways and for such different reasons, at the same time!? What does it mean that I’m in love with a man I wish I’d never met??? Will I ever figure out how to truly be okay without Mr. Trouble?

My Feelings Don’t Define Me

The thing about my relationship with Mr. Trouble is that I’ve always mentally railed against how I feel about him. Back when I finally allowed myself to give in and sleep with him for the first time I honestly believed I wasn’t capable of trusting him enough to develop real feelings for him. Then as I spent last summer really getting to know him and falling in love with him I was already bouncing back and forth between basking in the glow and fighting myself internally, seeing him deal with the guilt early on and going back and forth with each of us calling it off but always coming back together.

I didn’t fully realize that I was truly, deeply in love with him until around November and, at that time, didn’t have any idea that he returned my feelings. So, I started trying to let go and spent months feeling heartbroken, desperate to see him and unable to let go emotionally *at all*. It got so bad I was having anxiety and panic attacks just from thinking about him which, thankfully, lead me to seeking a new therapist. Game changer!

After learning about codependency I finally had the tools I needed to be able to choose to stop sleeping with Mr. Trouble. Before this, even when I wanted to end it in my head, I wasn’t able to deny what my emotions were demanding and kept circling back. Finally learning about the alcohol abuse Mr. Trouble had been hiding was painful beyond description and left me terrified for his safety as his primary mode of transportation is a motorcycle. Even though my heart was screaming in pain for us both, I was able to tell him we I couldn’t sleep with him when he was dependent on downing bottles of whiskey to get through the day. Confronting him about his drinking was one of the most painful things I’ve ever done, but he needed to hear it and I love him, so I couldn’t ignore it even if it wasn’t my place. I genuinely wanted to be his friend from the very beginning and hope our friendship can last.

Anyway, thanks to meditation I’ve realized that although I’ve come a long way, when it comes to my feelings for Mr. Trouble I have still been feeling that they in part define who I am as a person. I hate knowing that he’s cheating on his wife to be with me. I hate being so in love with him when he doesn’t have time for me. I hate how my inner hopeless romantic constantly tries to imagine happily ever after with him when I know real life would never look like that. Even so, I let him back into my bed a couple months ago. Once I saw that he was making a real effort to do better throughout his life (including drinking less), it kind of felt as if it didn’t matter whether I was sleeping with him or not. Either way I was in love with him, and he with me. Either way we were confiding in one another in what feels like an emotional affair at the very least. Either way I was judging myself and my worth as a person harshly due to our relationship. So if I’m the worst person on Earth either way, why shouldn’t I at least allow us the comfort of one another?

Thinking about Mr. Trouble makes me feel so incredibly lonely, I assume because he can’t offer the things I need. But a big part of me is desperately trying to survive on the occasional bread crumb dropped by him because of how he really *sees* parts of who I am that no one else in my life does. I suppose the only realistic way to address this, rather than continuing on hang on his every glance and occasional text, is to find new people who DO see me the way I need…tough to do when one is disabled, immunocompromised and terrified of long haul COVID.

Mr. Trouble was the ONLY person that I wasn’t nervous to tell about changing to using my last name and preferring they/them pronouns…in fact I was really excited to tell him. After our drunken discussion in the beginning of the year in which I did my damndest to explain to him what it means to be nonbinary and a follow up text convo in which I admitted I would have redacted all of the personal information about ME had I been sober and Mr. Trouble reassured me, I completely trusted him to accept my decision about these changes. I was really excited that the timing worked out that we had plans to see one another the day before I told my parents, as I don’t see Mr. Trouble in person very often and we don’t text hardly at all compared to say a year ago. So, the FIRST person I was going to tell in person was going to be the one person I was excited to tell rather than nervous. Well, life of course had other plans and he had to cancel last minute. I was super disappointed and almost didn’t bother telling him, thinking I’d just let him hear it through the grape vine at work. But that felt like punishing him when he’d done nothing wrong and I AM sleeping with him, so not doing him the courtesy of telling him felt wrong. I ended up telling him via text, which was fine.

So, I’m hanging on to Mr. Trouble so tightly, in spite of the intense negative effects on my self esteem, for perhaps understandable reasons. I am really working hard on being as kind to myself as possible, but when it comes to this relationship it’s really tough. How do I stop mentally fighting so hard against these powerful feelings he engenders in me? I’m hoping the title of this post is the key…it seems in every other part of my life I’ve gotten used to the idea that my feelings don’t define me, they come, need to be felt, and I can then let them pass/let them go/accept them and choose my decisions using wise mind. But when it comes to my feelings about Mr. Trouble I’ve never truly accepted them, never been able to externalize them or let them go at ALL. And I’ve judged myself as a person so harshly because of these feelings and this relationship…I still am. Now I have to try and forgive myself; hopefully all of the insight I’ve worked so hard to gain will be enough to finally make this possible.

This relationship does not define me or my worth.

These feelings do NOT make me a bad person.

As I try to believe about everyone else in the world, I’m doing the best I can with the tools I have and the circumstances in which I find myself. I’d expect nothing more from *anyone* else than trying their best, and I’ve sure as shit been doing that! I hope this can finally be a turning point for me as I work on accepting and believing these things on an emotional level, not just in my head. Wish me luck!

I Deserve…?

I’m just gonna say it…

THERAPY SUCKS!!!

Lol. It’s totally worth it when I’m lucky enough to have found the right person to work with and I’ve made huge amounts of progress this year and am unquestionably seeing benefits, but it’s so fucking hard! And for the most part incredibly painful, demoralizing and just generally crushing to actually face and *deal with* all the shit locked up inside myself.

I find meditation to be a more and more useful tool the longer and more consistently I use it – I get help managing my pain level, dealing with strong emotions, working through trauma and even just quieting my mind and body so I can rest. I’m discovering this indescribable freedom in my own mind, where there don’t have to be limits. I’ve loved space my whole life and became a Star Trek fan at a young age. I was fascinated around 3-4 years old when I learned of a theory that space is folded over on itself because I immediately wondered, if space is folded, then what’s around it!? And whatever that is…what’s beyond that!? This is my earliest memory regarding the idea of infinity. Around the same age LFD asked me what I though would happen if something changed from three dimensional to two dimensional right in front of me…would there be sparks!? Fireworks!? A loud crack noise perhaps? Would flames erupt? Among all of the magical effects he suggested, I was unconvinced and hesitantly responded, “No…I don’t think anything like that would happen…” and that’s when he took a strip of paper and introduced me to the Mobius Strip.

So, perhaps it should come as no surprise that my mental landscape is space; where I can use the impossibility of truly comprehending its vastness, diversity and beauty to release all of the limits I face in reality, both internal and external. In my mind at least, space IS infinite. No matter how overwhelming my feelings get, when I go there in my meditation, there is ALWAYS enough room. There is always enough space to hold whatever it is I need to release, and letting go of it in this way doesn’t mean it’s truly GONE nor lost in any way, but rather just that there is space for it without my having to hold it in…I can still come back to it, I don’t even have to leave it in the first place, only externalize it and in this way am able to release the burden of being overwhelmed and crushed by the forces with which I am struggling to manage. From the day S1E1 aired, I have always found the opening for Star Trek Enterprise to be extremely inspirational and a source of strength when I am struggling.

For most of my life I have struggled with feeling trapped in my body to varying degrees. It has been particularly brutal since my spinal injury, but I have made a lot of progress. Most of the time lately I feel grateful that I am still seeing signs of improvement even more than 18 months after my spinal surgery. I prioritize my physical, mental and emotional health to the best of my ability and have felt that this focus is essentially my full time job for some time – it’s extremely rewarding to find myself able to do more and suffer through less pain with less rest and recovery time needed as well. That said, it is still extremely frustrating to be 32 and disabled, spending the majority of my time in bed resting my neck. It’s incredibly isolating and emotionally exhausting for one naturally so extremely extroverted as myself.

It was during meditation a few weeks ago that I realized I felt closeted, hiding my gender identity out of fear. I’d made so much progress this year in therapy and was feeling so positive on a surface level, but my soul was not at peace. So I went searching internally, purposefully looking for what was hurting inside me. It’s continuously mind blowing to me to realize just how much I reflexively suppress in a misguided attempt to protect myself from having to deal with things should they rise to a conscious level. I honestly thought having figured out years ago that I am nonbinary that all which mattered to me was ME knowing who I am, that I didn’t care how the rest of the world sees me. There are advantages to being seen as an attractive young woman in our culture, and I have most certainly benefited from being perceived as such most of my life. I am also a survivor of horrific abuse, which I have suffered in one form or another nearly my entire life. Some of this likely would’ve been different had I been born male. Some of it wouldn’t have. But the point is I wasn’t even consciously AWARE of these feelings, the overpowering FEAR of being open about my gender identity, the fact that I felt like I was hiding this huge part of who I am in a closet…the people closest to me knew and I’d thought that was enough. Now as I’m facing showing this side of myself, there is fear, but there is also a sense of relief, some excitement and joy, some frustration and so many other things. However I am now actively CHOOSING to be authentic and express that in new ways, something which wouldn’t have been possible without the infinite space which was necessary for me to be able to consciously acknowledge the absolutely consuming fear I was feeling in relation to my gender identity. I couldn’t help but wonder, considering the extreme violence and abuse I’ve had to endure from a relative position of privilege being perceived as a straight cis woman, what was going to happen to me if I shed this skin and let the world know that NONE of those things are who I am?

Luckily I’ve never been one to let fear determine my choices! I learned something I suspect may be equally as profound in my meditation today. I began with exploring the idea that my body does not define me. This is a belief with which my feelings still often conflict, so I’ve been trying to find my way through the Gordian Knot of feelings which tell me my body is who I am. While meditating on this, a new thought came to me: how others perceive me ALSO does *not* define me! I was thinking about reflections and shadows I’ve seen at times when I felt the most like me, typically on my motorcycle although today I also thought about being on a horse, having spent my entire youth as an extremely active equestrian. Then this new notion arrived, I guess I must have finally been ready for it. Is this more or less powerful than the idea that my body does not define me? Because nearly all of the issues I have with my body are based in culture, perception and how others interact with me. Don’t get me wrong, there is still some gender dysphoria in there because all else aside I would still be deeply horrified, in a way for which there are no adequate words aside from ‘gender dysphoria,’ by the fact that I have the necessary plumbing to bear a child. However, without all of the cultural elements this would be a vanishingly small difficulty compared to my gender issues now.

I saw the movie ‘Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, A Journey, A Song’ recently and was deeply moved by how much I related to everything! I feel I understand Cohen’s search for meaning in life, relate to how he feels about sex, know what it’s like to feel so deeply and be driven by spiritual *need* one does not yet understand. I can only hope my story end half as well as his; he finally found that inner peace in the end for which I am still striving. Perhaps this new concept of not allowing how others perceive me to define me will be my next step on a similar journey!

I still seek to get to a place where I FEEL that I deserve better than I’ve ever been able to allow myself to have, but at least I’ve made progress on the thinking side of that and in my head do believe I deserve better.

Better than being afraid to say ‘no’ when I don’t want to have sex (which I DO now!)

Better than using sex in the hopes of stopping someone from abandoning me (recent realization so this may take some time yet)

Better than being abandoned

Better than someone who truly doesn’t have time for me

Better than an affair with someone who’s married

Better than being abused, in ANY form

Better than being excluded or ignored

Better than being taken for granted

Better than being judged just because I’m different

Better than being resented for limitations due to my health

Better than living with fear

So ya know, I don’t ask for MUCH! Lol. Lofty goals no doubt, but worthy ones! And before this year I’d never even considered what I deserve, so this is already a lot of progress! I also freely admit the thinking part is the easier one to convince, but even realizing I wanted to believe and feel these things was an enormous hurdle so as far as I’m concerned I’m on the downhill slope with only my feelings left!!!

…even so, wish me luck!

Perspective

I just had a shattering realization – I am absolutely *desperate* for Mr. Trouble to know how I feel – that I’m completely, hopelessly, utterly in love with him, with ALL of him. The good, the bad, everything. I love him for who he is, his strengths and his weaknesses, not for who I want him to be.

And I am not AT ALL SURE I’m okay with him knowing how consuming my love for him is…

He came to my new place for the first time Monday afternoon. It was last minute but the timing just lined up!

So many times over the last nearly three months since I moved I’ve found myself laying in bed and absolutely HATING the fact that Mr. Trouble had never been here. I wanted him here, in my space, finally seeing the side of myself I feel safe enough to express in my own home. It surprised me, the pain that sliced through me when Mr. Trouble said something indicating he thought I’d decorated the guest room at my folks’ place where I was living before…he had no way of knowing. But as is so often the case, I want him to know SO MUCH! I want to give him all of me and that’s not an option. I want too much, I know…

Apparently that includes wanting him to know for certain just how deeply in love with him I am. I hadn’t realized I was focusing on sex, reflexively thinking that was the best option open to me to communicate my feelings for Mr. Trouble. Now I’m not so sure…

I am fully aware I had Mr. Trouble up on a pedestal for an alarming length of time, but his alcohol abuse shattered that for good. Even so, I struggle with what I feel I want, what I feel I deserve and what is. The last thing I’ve ever wanted is to make Mr. Trouble feel in any way pressured, yet I can’t deny having knowingly altered my responses at times in order to essentially reward good behavior from him and put boundaries in place when I needed to protect myself from his destructive tendencies.

I’ve been telling him for a while now that I want to show him new heights and drive him insane with pleasure until he can’t even remember his own name. However, I recognize how much trust it takes to let go that much with someone and that it requires a certain kind of tolerance to be able to handle overwhelming levels of pleasure – plus the last thing I want to risk is scaring him off! He is clearly used to being the more experienced partner in bed and while he’s enjoyed everything we’ve done together so far and tells me he likes trying new things with me, he still gets a bit intimidated by my ideas so I’m trying to be patient and take things slowly showing him new things in bed.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the guardian bell I gave him last year, trying to better understand my motivations…..I now realize I was symbolically giving him a piece of myself as proof of my love. I gave different bells (which represented the recipients as is traditional rather than one that represents me) to two other people…one of whom is Mr. Trustworthy…and never felt the need to mention the fact that this only came about due to my extensive search for the perfect gift for Mr. Trouble. I was actually trying to let go at the time, having finally realized how deep my feelings were. Things with Mr. Trouble were always intended to be about sex and fun, not anything real. So, knowing he’s married and has his own life, I began trying to end things because real feelings isn’t what we’d signed up for…

Anyway, when he was here Monday I was really not feeling too hot and yet I was still insatiable for him…even when the things I wanted were actively causing me significant amounts of pain I kept going for as long as possible before finally giving in and settling for a different option.

After we were done, he was laying in my bed looking relaxed but tired. Recently I’ve discovered that Mr. Trouble likes it when I massage his temples, eyes, etc. It’s so damn hard to ever keep my hands off of him, but last year I rubbed his neck when he complained it was sore and he then reported having neck pain for MONTHS! So I’ve always been super hesitant to use any of my massage skills on him, ironically fearing he’s too delicate lol.

So there we are, naked in my bed, him on his back and me pressed up against the length of his side as I gently massage his face. After a bit I move behind his ears, down his neck, to his shoulders and pecs. It’s something I know but am rarely consciously aware of; Mr. Trouble is left handed. As I moved over from his left to right side, everything felt far less tense. I did a pretty thorough investigation as this surprised me until finally, external processor that I am! I said out loud, ‘Oh right, you’re left handed. That’s why your left side is so much tighter.’ Because clearly simply following the signs from his body and moving back to working on relaxing his left side would’ve just been TOO easy!

He relaxed significantly as I spent more than half an hour cuddled up against him, gently massaging and relaxing him. As I watched his face and soaked in the freedom to touch him, the words I’ve never spoken to him were on the tip of my tongue. Had he actually fallen asleep I’m certain they would’ve slipped out…

Now I’m realizing that I’ve been using physical touch, including but not limited to sex, in an effort to *show* Mr. Trouble just how much I love him. I don’t know what his love language is so my success in using physical touch to express what I haven’t been willing to say out loud may be mixed at best, but it’s what comes naturally to me so I can’t really help the desperate desire to touch him as much as possible.

Maybe it’s time to say the words? Does he want to hear them? What if saying the words makes him feel pressured? I hate that I can’t help imagining a life with him, especially knowing the reality would NOT amount to happily ever after.

Does my hypersexuality stem from my fear of expressing how I feel in other ways combined with my intrinsic need for physical touch?

I’m also feeling conflicted about sleeping with both Mr. Trouble and Mr. Trustworthy. They both know I’ve got someone else, but am I supposed to tell Mr. Trustworthy every time I see Mr. Trouble? I hate telling Mr. Trustworthy about plans with or having seen Mr. Trouble as it feels like I’m essentially saying hey, you’re my best friend and I love our sex life but you just aren’t enough to meet all my needs so I’m also fucking our boss. As long as they both know things are ongoing between me and both of them why would I need to say more? Ugh…I don’t know. I’m not actively trying to hide anything, it’s just that I’m ashamed.

I’m deeply ashamed that with everything he gives me, Mr. Trustworthy isn’t enough for me. I’m ashamed that I’m so in love with my married boss, carrying on an on-again-off-again affair for over a year and knowing that our relationship contributed to Mr. Trouble’s drinking getting so out of control earlier this year. I was living in terror 24/7 that he was going to crash on his bike due to being intoxicated and die – even had a nightmare in which exactly that happened and I watched helplessly as he lay dying on the side of some deserted back road. Thankfully that didn’t happen and he seems to be doing better overall, including drinking less. He hasn’t been downing a bottle of whiskey any of the times we’ve been together since I let him in again. He’s treating me like a real person, who matters to him, now (unlike before). I feel like our relationship is stable and he hasn’t made me cry a single time this round. His communication has improved markedly which helps a ton. I just can’t help being insecure.

When sex is what I’m offering I feel confident and don’t fear rejection. When it’s my feelings and my heart I’m offering, my trust and abandonment issues rise up with alacrity and ferociousness. I guess I convinced myself sex was a solution…I’ve definitely used sexual behavior as a coping mechanism/way to escape the pain of life.

I guess I feel like sex is an opportunity for me to prove to others that I’m good enough, that I’m worthy and don’t deserve to be discarded and abandoned. It’s something I can offer that others want even if they don’t want me for me.

Wow – that hurts to admit. I deserve better than that…or at least I’m trying to believe I do…

My Yin & Yang

I really just want to die right now, or at least hide FOREVER curled up in my bed, under the covers, never to be seen again.

I saw Mr. Trustworthy this morning and, as always, it was great. Yes the sex, but also the company. Never before in my life have I felt the pervasive sense of safety I feel with Mr. Trustworthy. I couldn’t love him more if I tried!

Still, it’s complicated. No secrets, that’s the deal with us. Friends forever. No matter what. Sounds pretty straightforward, right? Perhaps, if quite a few important details were altered, indeed it could be…but he’s my best friend, so he has to hear pretty much everything. Especially the never ending story between Mr. Trouble and myself.

I’m in a lot of pain today. I thought about taking ibuprofen or something like that but I hate taking pills and don’t want to build up tolerance either. I thought about getting drunk but that really hasn’t appealed to me at all lately. So, resting in bed for most of the day, bored and hurting, resisting other measures, I pivoted to sex. Thanks to my masochism, if I get horny enough I can turn whatever pain isn’t blocked out in to pleasure…plus the endorphins from orgasms also help manage the pain as a bonus. After not talking all afternoon, Mr. Trustworthy text me just as my masturbation sesh was heating up…

How you feeling

Horny!

😝

It’s not raining

I’m not kidding lol…I’m putting that same vibe to further use at the moment!

I’m not only horny when it’s raining lol

Only when your awake?

Naw…dirty dreams are common lol

Did I not satisfy you?

You did for the moment but I’m not sure it’s possible to satisfy me permanently!

I’m too greedy

There’s a couple things I don’t think we’ve specifically talked about that maybe now’s a good time for me to mention…I’ve suffered from hypersexuality nearly my whole life. People always think a girl that’s a nympho would be awesome but the reality just isn’t. It’s rather miserable a lot of the time but I just live with it. I also use it as a coping mechanism cuz I’ve been in a lot of pain all day and rather than take pills or get drunk, both of which I seriously considered, if I get horny instead I can use my masochism to turn the pain in to pleasure plus the endorphins from orgasms help manage the pain for a bit. My stupid sex drive isn’t at all normal, same goes for my masochism. I use both as tools to help me cope with life cuz both also make me miserable so I take what up side I can find.

TL;DR none of it is any reflection on us, you or our sex life

I’ve already figured out your sex drive is not exactly normal.

Well ya, I didn’t expect to shock you just actually addressed it directly for once

And as hesitant as I am to say this, Mr. Trouble’s not in my life because of sex. Just for the record. If you could do anything that would get him out of my life believe me I’d be the first to ask you

As ridiculous as my sex drive is it doesn’t control me or my decision making like it did when I was younger

…aaaaaaand I haven’t heard a word back. I feel ridiculously vulnerable and stupid for admitting I was horny and masturbating when Mr. Trustworthy happened to text to check on me earlier 😦 Plus part of me has always felt like part of Mr. Trustworthy thinks Mr. Trouble is in my life because I want something more or different in bed than what I get from Mr. Trustworthy, which simply isn’t at all why I can’t let go of Mr. Trouble. I’ve felt for a long time I needed to say that but I’ve never had the guts to before. Maybe I’m just stupid through and through tonight, what do I know? Not that that would exactly be a NEW development…

Last week Mr. Trustworthy planned a motorcycle ride for instructors which Mr. Trouble and I both attended. There were six of us total and after the ride, we stopped and had dinner. Mr. Trouble ended up sitting next to me and across from Mr. Trustworthy. Texting with Mr. Trustworthy the next day, the group ride came up…

So if we took a poll of the other four people last night, how many do you think realized we were flirting? Lol

Everyone knows me, I flirt with everyone

I know you do 🙂 that’s part of why I don’t worry about diving in lol

Oh and I totally gave you a hug at ******** but I didn’t feel the need to correct you at the view point cuz I wanted another hug lol

I know, just wanted another hug and it’s a good cover up

That’s what I was wondering 😉😘

I noticed Mr. Trouble didn’t give you a hug or even acknowledge you much

None of my business, sorry

He and I don’t hug in public…he is my boss

You don’t need to be sorry

And you’re right and wrong…we were talking on intercom

I know you were

But we do play it pretty close to the vest. That’s part of why I let him closer again, cuz he stopped trying to burn his whole world to the ground

What gave it away that we were talking?

I could hear Mr. Trouble when we were stopped

Damn…will have to watch out for that in group rides. Thanks

You were the only person I hugged, I don’t hug other instructors unless they initiate it, don’t wanna risk making anyone uncomfortable

…aaaaand he dropped off again. I should’ve asked him if he actually heard whatever Mr. Trouble was saying or just could hear his voice and because he knows about our affair assumed Mr. Trouble was talking to me or if he actually heard something that might’ve tipped off any other person to the fact that I was talking with Mr. Trouble on intercom during the group ride…?

I feel like such a fucking heel. Sure Mr. Trustworthy got all of my visible attention but it had to hurt knowing I was talking with Mr. Trouble while the group of us were out riding together. I really thought it would stay between the two of us, I couldn’t think of any way in which Mr. Trustworthy would know or I would’ve at least reconsidered the decision before hitting my intercom and bugging Mr. Trouble. Also forces me to wonder about the motivation behind that extra hug Mr. Trustworthy lied to get from me when we took a break at the view point, cleverly asking where his hug was since I hadn’t given him one yet!? Which of course I had, as soon as he showed up for the ride. But I can’t ever get enough hugs so I wasn’t going to call him out!

Don’t get me wrong, if somehow my talking with Mr. Trouble via intercom had come up I never would’ve lied to Mr. Trustworthy, it would’ve just remained among the many details there’s no reason to share had he not brought up Mr. Trouble’s behavior toward me. Similarly, the Friday before our group ride I had plans with Mr. Trouble, he’d asked me to lunch and though I was loathe to admit it, I was extremely apprehensive! I wasn’t willing to be vulnerable enough to admit that or ask Mr. Trouble if lunch was strictly personal or at all work related, just accepted and then told Mr. Trustworthy how nervous I was considering all of the serious and often not at all fun conversations Mr. Trouble and I have had over COFFEE I was scared of the reasons I was imagining for what would warrant a request for LUNCH!?

Well, *lunch* turned in to me meeting Mr. Trouble at his house rather than at a restaurant as had been the initial plan. Even with the location change I was still a bit nervous Mr. Trouble might have something serious we needed to talk about. However, he greeted me relaxed and happy and several minutes later, once I had my mouth free long enough, I jokingly said, ‘Well, it doesn’t appear that you’re going to fire me!?’ which made him chuckle along with me. He assured me that no, he wasn’t going to fire me. I explained my logic of being afraid to wonder what might warrant us meeting for LUNCH considering the conversations we’ve had over COFFEE and he laughed and said, ‘Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking!’

Mr. Trustworthy asked me to let him know how things went with Mr. Trouble, so I text him after I left Mr. Trouble’s house, saying ‘Everything’s okay with Mr. Trouble, he just wanted to see me.’ I did not volunteer the detail about the location change and we didn’t discuss my seeing Mr. Trouble any more, even though Mr. Trustworthy and I had plans for that afternoon and spent a couple hours together. I felt super awkward because I wasn’t 100% sure if Mr. Trustworthy realized I’d had sex with Mr. Trouble basically right before spending time with him but whether he realized it or not, I really didn’t want to have sex with him too. My freaking clothes still smelled like Mr. Trouble, no doubt I did as well. If Mr. Trustworthy wasn’t certain I’d already had sex before seeing him that day, I sure as hell didn’t want him figuring it out while we were naked!

So yeah. Does that make me a hypocrite that I didn’t want to have sex with both of them in the same day when I’ve done exactly that twice in the past? The thing is, both times it happened before it was not planned whereas this time I did have plans to see them both the same day. Also, I’m honestly not even sure if this mattered or not, but the other times, I’d been with Mr. Trustworthy first and it was Mr. Trouble who was round #2. I just couldn’t do it and I was too much of a coward to outright tell Mr. Trustworthy that I didn’t want to have sex that day, let alone tell him why. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t lie to him, and whatever I told him about not feeling into it was true, it was just a very shallow truth if that makes sense.

Wow did I have a lot to get off my chest. Mr. Trustworthy is my emotional rock and before today I’d been planning to tell him as soon as I saw him in person again about changing my name and pronouns, but I came up thoroughly yellow bellied today and just didn’t because I’m so damn afraid. If I say it out loud it will be real and I know I can’t unring that bell. Am I just not ready? Maybe I will put this off until after my next therapy appointment on Friday and see how I’m feeling then…

I’m always afraid when talking with Mr. Trustworthy and the subject turns to Mr. Trouble that some day Mr. Trustworthy will just outright ask me what it is Mr. Trouble gives me that Mr. Trustworthy doesn’t? I’ve certainly told Mr. Trustworthy more times than I can remember that there is no comparing my relationship with him to my relationship with Mr. Trouble, but given the sheer number of times I’ve insisted that alone lends credence to the fact that Mr. Trustworthy doesn’t totally believe me. It’s true, but it’s only part of the truth and I’m sure that’s what Mr. Trustworthy senses…that and that fact Mr. Trouble is still in my life after all this time also unfortunately underlines how important Mr. Trouble is to me.

Maybe it’s time I just give the run down and get this off my chest, as I seem to be doing with so much else already tonight…

Mr. Trustworthy is my best friend. He knows me so deeply and I have let down more walls to let him in to my heart than I thought I was even capable of letting down at this point in my life. I trust him without reservation and there is absolutely nothing that would ever convince me to view him in any way other than loving me and having my best interests at heart, my default setting when it comes to him is definitely to give him the benefit of the doubt no matter what. I rely so heavily on him for my emotional stability, to help me when I get overwhelmed, when I’m stuck in my own head overthinking things, or even just when I’m lonely or hurting. Plus the sex is awesome! He goes out of his way to please me and boy does he know what I like by now! He’s always up for trying new things, why even today we finally tried figging together! But the sex is only so great because I have been so incredibly vulnerable with him, which is only possible due to the depth of trust and love we’ve built over the past couple of years. I admit I’m still afraid of what he will think presuming I do go ahead with changing my name and pronouns, because I know he just doesn’t understand and I doubt he ever can. But in my head I know I can trust him and I certainly won’t let my own feelings of fear come between us.

That said, Mr. Trouble is in my life for a reason. I feel like we are wired the same; we not only think in similar ways but he understands parts of me that Mr. Trustworthy can’t. Mr. Trouble sees me differently, he really SEES parts of who I am that are illusive to Mr. Trustworthy. That’s why Mr. Trouble’s the *only* person who makes me feel seen when he says my current name. Aside from the fear which I know from experience I can just chose to ignore, that’s the only other thing that makes me hesitate to change my name…I know Mr. Trouble will respect the request which means I might never get to hear him say my current name again and I don’t want to lose that feeling. I’m not even sure how to describe it beyond just feeling like all of me is being seen.

Even so, I can’t imagine I’d ever trust Mr. Trouble in an even vaguely similar way to how I trust Mr. Trustworthy. I don’t trust Mr. Trouble to not hurt me, although lately he’s actually treating me like a real human being whom he at least slightly cares about rather than treating me like trash as he did for so long. Even as awful as he was to me, to be fair I actively encouraged much of that behavior and hid it from him when he did hurt me for a very long time because I wasn’t willing to be vulnerable enough to let him know how deeply it cut. Plus there was the alcohol abuse going on for a while which I didn’t know about that also played a factor in how frequently Mr. Trouble hurt me previously. Things have been good and very stable since I let him back in my bed so to speak, which makes me feel like I was correct that Mr. Trouble’s been making an effort to do better throughout his life and is no longer in that ugly downward spiral from the beginning of the year.

So, while I am way too deeply in love with Mr. Trouble, I can’t imagine ever trusting him with all of me, all of my vulnerabilities and fears. And although it might be hard for some to believe, loving Mr. Trouble does not at all take anything away from how completely in love with Mr. Trustworthy I am. Lately I feel like they are my yin & yang, one giving me the total safety and security as well as unconditional love I’ve always craved and the other understanding all of the complicated sides of me, offering none of the security but relating to the parts of me which elude Mr. Trustworthy. Sometimes I think if a single person were able to give me the combination of everything the two of them currently give me I’d have found the happily ever after I know Mr. Trustworthy wants for me. Too bad I don’t believe it would end in ‘happily ever after’ even if such a person did exist and find their way in to my life.

So here I am, confiding in my blog because I’m holding so much in, even from my best friend. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been talking to Mr. Trustworthy and he knows I’m struggling with big things emotionally at the moment, trying to work on things, trying to work THROUGH things, he just isn’t clued in on all the details at the moment as I already know from previous conversations that while he is always willing to listen, he can’t understand and just doesn’t have any way to truly relate to where I’m at. Part of me thinks I should be grateful I have both these men in my life, and part of me IS grateful. But I also feel so guilty that Mr. Trustworthy gives me so much and no matter how many times I turn to Mr. Trouble, no matter how many times I run to Mr. Trustworthy heartbroken over Mr. Trouble, Mr. Trustworthy is still there for me, still loves and supports me, still listens to me and asks for nothing at all in return. He texts me every single day just to say good morning and I’m lost without him. It kills me knowing that even with all he gives me it isn’t enough. I’d give anything for what we have to be enough, but it can’t be, not in this lifetime. So Mr. Trouble remains…filling in the gaps.

That’s the best I can do for now…

A Rose By Any Other Name

I like my name. I’m named after my maternal grandmother, with whom I have always been close. My mom’s middle name is also the same, and my sister used a shortened version of my name for her oldest. I legally changed my name after H passed, removing my middle name entirely and picking a new last name as I was not going back to LFD’s surname. As much as ‘Mustang’ feels like home, I don’t feel ready to take on the world’s reaction were I to legally change my name to that…nor do I want to lose my first name which is currently reflected in four generations of my family. What I DO think might work, however, is going by my current last name; its typical usage in the U.S. is as a first name for boys. There’s only one person who makes me feel seen and whole when I hear them use my first name and, for better or worse, that person is Mr. Trouble. When anyone else says my name, it’s just an identifier, not a meaningful reflection of *me*, just of family history that was in effect before anyone even knew who I am. I hope such a change wouldn’t hurt my grandmother, but she has always been extremely progressive and I think she’d just want me to be happy.

Thinking about changing my pronouns and the name I go by is exciting, terrifying and extremely daunting. But until yesterday I’d never been willing to even seriously consider doing either, so…is that progress? Part of me thinks changes like this are actually reactive and reflect one trying to run away from who they are and escape a traumatic past. Would I be non-binary if I hadn’t suffered the abuse I endured growing up? Does the answer to that question ultimately matter? Now I’m thinking myself in circles – I think I need to take a break from all the overthinking I’ve been engaged in recently. Perhaps I will just sit with this idea for a bit and see how I’m feeling…wish me luck!

The Only Way Out Is Through

The more I read online the more afraid I am. I have an extensive history of trauma even without coming out and I feel like there’s so little support for non-binary people, nearly everything is for trans people. I hate saying that because truly I don’t begrudge trans people any assistance, I realize being trans is unimaginably difficult. It’s just that if I feel unsafe living passing as a straight woman how can I live more authentically given what the LGBTQ+ community faces? I just feel so profoundly unsafe already but seeing my reflection hurts because I can’t help but see a woman looking back at me and that’s just not who I am.

I feel like myself when I’m ‘Mustang’ – a name I picked because it reflects my desperate need to be able to live my life wild and free, not constrained by others or my past. Part of me thinks I’d love to change my pronouns but I’m not sure anyone would support me, including my best friend. I guess I think he’d TRY because he loves me, but would he still see me for me? Would he judge me, withdraw emotionally? I feel like that’s possible and that would brake my heart. I guess fear of losing him isn’t a good enough reason to not live my life authentically…and I believed my therapist when (referring to my feelings of isolation) she said it’s probably a combination of having people in my life who are just not strong enough to handle all the weight I carry and just having the wrong people in my life, but knowing that doesn’t at all ease how painful it would be to lose everyone, the support system I’ve worked so hard trying to build for myself. I know it’s not perfect but it’s what I have.

Picasso

I feel like a coward. I’ve always run toward the things that scare me, always been enraptured by challenges. Is my own gender identity and gender expression what’s going to finally break me? I don’t want it to hurt so much to look at my own reflection. Would changing my pronouns have any effect on that? I used to believe I didn’t want to change my pronouns but now I think the deeper truth is that I’m afraid to, which doesn’t feel good. I’ve already done a lot to change my appearance, but without taking extreme measures I think people will always see me as female at first glance. I’ve used passing as an attractive straight girl to my advantage and am hesitant to trade that privilege away; the alternative is just so fucking scary.

I know my state is one that allows people to change their gender marker on their driver’s license and mine expires in a few months. Would changing mine help?

Crap…a coworker I don’t know well but do know to be non-binary just responded to my text asking if we could talk some time with ‘…. Mustang?’ and it brought tears to my eyes that they remembered the name I actually prefer; I don’t even remember sharing that! I know I’d never lose my godparents. I feel sick to my stomach having just reached out to another coworker; I’ve been really upset with him because of something that happened with work a couple months ago and hiding that I’m upset with him from everyone but my best friend. And the only reason I know his daughter is trans is because Mr. Trouble told me – not a relationship I want to advertise if I did try to ask that coworker about what he learned as his daughter transitioned and managing the fear and fatigue of having to come out over and over again in different settings etc.

I’ve become so open about my physical and mental illnesses and realizing my belief that the only way to destigmatize such things is to talk about them openly, educate others and answer questions is equally applicable to issues surrounding identity and gender makes me feel like a hypocrite, hiding away out of fear and convenience. Which I totally admit to, just between us lol. If I feel like my dykish appearance might be putting others off I just casually mention my late husband and tensions immediately ease.

I know I am a people pleaser and am personally extremely conflict averse. I’ve worked hard to be willing to speak up and, when necessary, stand my ground. However, most of this progress has been in my professional life. Standing up for myself in my personal life continues to be extremely challenging and I think all of this ties back in to the same source, not feeling safe.

I don’t feel safe as a woman in this world. I don’t feel safe as a non-binary person; I don’t feel safe being attracted to women. I don’t feel safe riding my motorcycle alone if I’m not armed. I just don’t feel safe, a feeling which has been reinforced over and over again through trauma and abandonment. I also happen to be an empath with the unfortunate tendency of absorbing the emotions people around me are feeling. I’ve been working on learning to keep the feelings I can sense in others external which helps avoid becoming overwhelmed myself, but this ability is still very much a work in progress.

So, I already want to please others and actively want to avoid conflict and on top of that, I actually experience others’ distress involuntarily. Talk about a recipe for hiding anything about myself which might make others uncomfortable! Which is almost laughable for me to say because in so many ways I have always eschewed conventional wisdom and hell even common sense! Insisting on blazing my own trail, even when that self prescribed path went straight off a cliff more often than not 😛 But what people don’t realize is, even standing out as much as I always have, I still hold SO. MUCH. BACK!

Maybe I’m still holding too much back and that’s why life hurts so much and I still feel so deeply isolated. I have to admit I’ve never truly felt like I found my tribe…every place I’ve looked I’ve still always been so different from everyone else. But looking for resources online for non-binary people was crushing to the point of pushing me to call a crisis line last week. Everything I could find online over the course of a few hours of searching was actually for and about trans people, not non-binary people. If I can’t even find support online how can I hope to find it in RL? Not that this is a yard stick worth using for comparison, but even the DSM V definition of gender dysphoria in large part only applies to trans people. I was stunned by how discouraging searching the internet for support as a non-binary person felt…I truly felt hopeless. I’ve learned to make huge concessions in my search for quality of life, but living without hope isn’t something I can do. Thankfully I ran across a local organization that serves sexual assault survivors and between their crisis line and support group for LGBTQ+ individuals, then an appointment with my therapist, I was able to once again believe there’s light at the end of the tunnel.

That said, I’m still really only one half height ladder rung above hopeless. I feel so lost and uncertain. I really don’t seem to be able to stand too much serenity in my life, always thinking my way into a new existential crisis. And I have to admit, this one scares me to death…

What’s in your cup?

this girl's journey to serenity

So You are holding a cup of coffee when someone comes along and bumps into you, making you spill your coffee everywhere.

Why did you spill the coffee?
“Because someone bumped into me!!!”

Wrong answer.
You spilled the coffee because there was coffee in your cup. Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea.

Whatever is inside the cup is what will spill out.

The same thing applies in recovery… when life comes along and bumps you (which WILL happen), whatever is inside you will come out. It’s easy to fake it… until you get bumped.

So we have to ask ourselves… “what’s in my cup?”

When life gets tough, what spills over?…Joy, gratefulness, peace and humility? OR Anger, bitterness, harsh words and reactions?

YOU choose how to fill your cup. That is what taking an inventory (Step 4 and Step 10) is all about.

Finding…

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I Hate You

I hate you.

I hate you for the drinking

I hate you for seeming like you’re TRYING to get us caught

I hate you for hiding even from me

I hate you for forcing me to read your face because you refuse to use words

I hate you for making my breath catch when I saw you laughing through your office window today

I hate you for letting me close enough to care deeply about you

I hate you for your selfishness

I hate you for your cowardice

I hate you for being my black mirror – I hate that when I think of you I see all the parts of myself I hate most

I hate you for actively choosing to give up on yourself

I hate you for always making me feel like an afterthought at best

I hate you for using those three words

I hate you every single time you attempt to manipulate me (NEWS FLASH: I am much better at deception and manipulation than you, my dear)

I still hate you for hiding from me the fact that you got married years ago

I hate you for this chemistry I don’t understand, that I NEVER wanted

I hate you for riding so fast, with so much skill, for the undeniable thrill of riding at the very edge of my ability when I ride with you

I hate that you know I usually use ‘I hate you’ as a form of endearment when it’s you

I hate you for having the power to give me panic attacks

I hate you for being so intelligent

I hate you for making me wonder if there’s any chance you might be sober when we text

I hate you for making me so uncertain of myself

I hate you for torturing me in my dreams – and that I always remember every detail the next morning

I hate you for not pushing harder to get me to talk about what happened with my class last week

I hate you for causing me to lie to a new but good friend to cover your impulsiveness and idiocy

I hate you for making me cry over and over and over again

I hate you for making me believe in my head that I matter to you but never allowing me to feel like I matter

I hate you for never asking why I keep coming back around even after I think I’ve finally let go

I hate you for not caring about my reputation, let alone my happiness or health

I hate you for pushing me to the point that I used sex as a weapon again

I hate you for all three times you said something that changed the entire landscape of my universe…and you didn’t even know

I hate you for starting a conversation on gender identity once we’d both been drinking, and for the secrets I never wanted you to know which I revealed in a drunken effort to give you context

I hate you for how you don’t touch me anymore outside of sex

I hate you for always finding new ways to make me feel rejected

I hate you for letting me see stars in your eyes

I hate you for waiting until months after I began trying to let go of you to finally communicate that you had feelings for me too

I hate you for causing me to always be at war with myself

I hate you for not asking about the dozen red roses when you were here less than a week after Valentine’s Day

I hate you for being so easy to talk to sometimes

I hate you for never acknowledging my relationship with Mr. Trustworthy, no matter how many times I talk about it

I hate you for making me feel so alone

I hate you for letting your walls down just long enough for us to truly make love once, and for never letting them down again

I hate you for not letting me help you

I hate you for not loving me enough to stay away

I hate you for not loving yourself enough to do better than this