May 16, 2018
The most empowering thing that any of us can do is start thinking more intentionally about our choices and questioning the assumptions that we don’t realize we are making.
The more we think and talk about these topics, the more clearly we are able to make choices about them.
For example… I learned a very unconventional relationship concept from an older woman I worked with the summer before I left for university. She and her husband spent 6-7 weeks per year together, and the rest of the time they worked in separate states and were very happy to be pen pals.
For 10 months of the year. Married pen pals!
It was as if she was shouting “Live separately from the beginning and come together for intense chunks of vacation and you'll have amazing chemistry for years!” to the world.
For most people that is unthinkable. Maybe unthinkable because they just are not willing to be apart from their partner/companion for that length of time, and I get that.
However, for most people, it's unthinkable simply because they have never seen anyone else do anything like that. After all, how can you have a thought for which you have no reference material?
**Our brains are wired to conserve energy rather than question our own beliefs, and so most of us don’t look too closely at the assumptions we have about life and our world that may be keeping us from living as fully and as happily as we want to deep inside.
I’ve been studying the idea of hegemonic forces recently (those assumptions we don’t realize we are making), and I have found this analogy useful.
Imagine you are a bird in a cage.
It's a big cage, very roomy. And it's so comfortable that you can sit on your favorite perch with your head outside of the roomy cage. In fact, you don't even realize you are in a cage. The bars are completely invisible to you because of your perspective.
But they are still keeping you trapped in patterns of behavior, even though you don't know it.
One of the best ways I know of to become aware of those cage bars is to travel. Exploring other cultures and learning a new language are all great ways to have a whole new view of yourself.
Seeing someone else's bars from the outside helps you recognize them for what they are - perpetuated assumptions - and then to recognize your own perpetuated assumptions too.
I invite you to travel vicariously into my world for a tick... I've considered myself polyamorous since I was 19, and I've spent the 17+ years since then exploring all the different flavors of it that I could connect with.
**Polyamory means “Many Loves”. IT IS COMMONLY PERCEIVED TO MEAN HAVING MULTIPLE INTIMATE PARTNERS SIMULTANEOUSLY. IT DOES FOR ME, AND EVEN MORE, IT’S A PHILOSOPHY THAT I HAVE the capacity to — AND DO! — DEEPLY love more than one person at a time.**
I've been on camping trips with families who wife-swapped a few times every summer. I've kissed a girl for good luck as she went off to have the threesome of her dreams with two of her favorite men. I was wildly delighted to have my very own amazing, spontaneous threesome with two of MY favorite men.
I've been "that unicorn" and seduced a woman in front of her husband, to the massive enjoyment of all three of us. I've repeatedly cuckolded a lover by fucking other men in front of him, requiring him to "hold the lube" and "massage my hands and feet while I cum" - and it was an experience of peak enjoyment and satisfaction for each of us.
I've been happily married, been happily divorced and I’ve even been "the other woman" who comes over to the house for Thanksgiving dinner with the whole family.
If your eyes have been bugging out of your head yet, then guess what: you just found one of those invisible bars that have been controlling you.
Not that you necessarily WISH you could do some of those things. Many people find it curious and are interested to hear my stories, but upon reflection decided that my lifestyle is not for them.
Which is absolutely fine with me.
I have no agenda to influence you to go be outrageous sexually, nor do I have any interest in converting you to a polyamorous lifestyle. I truly believe that no one relationship style is better or more enlightened than another.
I simply want to shine a light on the cage bars so that you can make a conscious choice about how you wish to live your life. Because how we interact with (or are hampered by) these cage bars affects all aspects of our lives, and all of our relationships and partnerships as well.
Those cage bars are not inherently good or inherently bad. Knowing that they are there, though, is how you claim the entirety of your power and live a life where you have true choice (not just one or two options that your childhood programming has told you will make you happy, and not just the choice that infatuation or cave-person instincts would propel you towards).
Because the interesting thing about that birdcage is that the door has never been closed. Anytime you want, you are free to exit the cage and do whatever you want with your life.
And about this, I will always be adamant: this is YOUR life - and you get to live it the way you choose to live it.
And you DO have a choice, even if from your current perspective it doesn’t look like it.
I love being on the leading edge of relationships & sexuality. I know what it’s like to consciously co-create relationships. I know what it’s like BE-ing hurt in a relationship.
And as careful as I try to be, I know what it's like to hurt others in relationship.
And yet, I don't believe in sad endings or in star-crossed lovers.
I know that love is an incredible force for good, and I know that love doesn't hurt.
It is our perpetuated assumptions about love that hurt.
Anytime you hurt, you've found the edge of your cage. You've found an assumption that you didn't know you had that has prevented you from being able to be real and to be truly seen by another.
These perpetuated assumptions become our filter that we see the world through. And the biggest problem with that filter is that it goes both ways. If you can't truly see others, neither can others see you.
I mention this because it's important. If you can't truly see who the person in front of you is, then you can't love them. You might love a fantasy version of them that you have made up in your head, but you can't love them because you don't even KNOW them.
You know and see a reflection… a reflection of your own filters.
There is a fabulous movie called 500 Days of Summer that shows this concept SO well! It's the same love story between the same two people but told a few different times. During the infatuation stage, the love affair looks perfect. Two people ideally suited for each other!
During the next phase, you start to see that there were details that the original camera view didn’t show you and that those details completely changed the vibe of the moment.
In the end, what looked perfect ended up being a harmful relationship for them both - not because of LOVE - but because they were trying to stuff the other person into a mold rather than treating them as an individual with their own interests and desires.
Until you can see each other for who you really are, you will hurt each other. Accidentally - and eventually, horrifically. Tragic misunderstandings that leave everyone baffled about what went wrong…
At some point, you’ll get to make a choice.
Do you want to know and love them - the being who they see themselves as? Or the version you have made up in your head about them?
Delicious partnerships all start with being willing to truly SEE the person in front of you for who they ARE - not for who you are hoping they are, or wish they would be.
Once you take ownership of your own cage bars and their effect on your perspective, now true partnership has a chance.
And while it might look like an intimidating road to take, I promise you that there is something incredibly delicious about connecting with another human being and seeing enough of who they truly are to love and appreciate them on a level so deep that it changes you.
And then to have them look back at you the same way? It’s exquisite.
Once we recognize these assumptions, what now?
How do we get back into integrity with ourselves and with the joyful lives we wish to be living?
Seeing your own filters and dismantling them is not a task for the skittish. It’s probably going to require that you face your own addictions - you know, the ones that you think have been keeping you “safe”.
Questioning your own assumptions about others takes courage.
But it’s worth it.
Because the other side of those few seconds of courage that each and every one of us has is immense potential for satisfaction.
Satisfaction in love, yes. Satisfaction in life, yes. General thriving all around, yes.
You get to have as much goodness, as much sweetness, as much joy and pleasure and ecstasy as you can accept because there is no such thing as lack.
In the end, how happy you are in this life is dependent on the choices you make now, the thoughts you entertain today and the company you keep this evening.
And I believe that it’s your choice. You get to chose to be happy and joyful by choosing what ideas and filters you keep and which ones you decide are no longer worth maintaining. In the end, the buck stops with you.
Being authentic takes courage.
That’s what I aim to do in my own life, and the conversations you are going to overhear are about my adventures of growing and expanding my own inner power and sexy energy to explore the life of my dreams.
Sometimes in my romantic and sexual relationships. Sometimes in my friendships with other women. And sometimes in my career and my business partnerships.
Anyhow... as I was saying, I enjoy making people blush.
Then at least they have discovered that they can be wildly embarrassed and not die… and maybe there are other things they wish they could do too that now they have a little more courage for.