This is an amazing piece. Thank you so much for opening up your thoughts and sharing them so completely. I can't imagine what writing this did for you, but I hope it was therapeutic to just get it all out.
Just like how Allie Brosh of Hyperbole and a Half helped me understand what it feels like to be depressed, this piece really helped me better understand my friends who have been through similar horrible circumstances, the thoughts and feelings they might have about whether it was or was not their fault. (And of course, it wasn't, and it never will be for any girl. Ever. Regardless of the situation.)
Praying that you find peace, comfort, hope, and even joy. Psalm 147:3.
Thank you again for your thoughtful piece, and for daring to make yourself vulnerable.
Amazing story! I love "Best Time I [blank]" stories, but this one was unexpectedly great. I thought it might be a "I-was-a-nude-model-and-it-was-awkward"-type story, but nope, I judged it too soon! Thanks for sharing!
@OhMarie Yes, me too! I am at my most happy when I borderline "cannot handle" everything I have on my plate. Stuff gets DONE that way. Not enough time to linger on about it--I >know< if I don't finish my stuff right then, it will literally be impossible to follow up on later.
Speaking of getting things done, I should come clean and admit that I am currently procrastinating from completing a particularly horrible office assignment that requires me to call Important People I don't know, to ask them for minutes of their time they probably can't spare so I can receive info I don't understand to put in an Excel spreadsheet that is probably ultimately meaningless. Motivation is difficult to drum up right now....*le sigh*
Oh fanfiction. I hope youths of today still write their own. Totally missing out, otherwise.
I had a Dragon Ball Z fanfiction (maybe more like three...) going for a while, and while I garnered some fans, it was pretty PG. No romantic stuff (I was too tomboy for that), but lots of descriptions about Bree's (*cough*whoIwantedtobe*cough*) totally cool "anime-style black hair" and "icy blue ices," and all of her hardcore martial arts training so she could go Super Saiyan--EVEN THOUGH SHE NEVER KNEW SHE WAS HALF-HUMAN, HALF-SAIYAN WHICH MADE HER CRAZY STRONG AND POWERFUL.
Oh, but I did have a crush on Piccolo, for some unaccountable reason, and even stopped smiling for awhile because "Piccolo never smiles because he's always so serious." (*Silver lining: My mom thought I stopped smiling because of I was horribly embarrassed about my buck tooth that stuck out of my mouth, so I got braces ASAP. Wasn't embarrassed about that yet, actually, but yay!) I felt too embarrassed admitting I had a crush on a pointy-eared, green-skinned alien from a "cartoon," but guys--GUYS--he had the deepest, sexiest voice!
I attribute my prepubescent crush on Piccolo for his deep voice and serious demeanor for my long-time crush on Mark Lanegan. Yow :).
Ooo! Ooo! Me! Me! Me!
I have productivity tips! (And I am marginally more productive than most people, I've noticed!)
- The "StayFocusd" extension for Chrome is amazing (it might also be available for other browsers). Set the amount of time you want to assign for you to look at time-wasting websites each day (for me, it's 10 minutes total, for FB/Imgur/HuffPost), then once your time is up, you can't mindlessly slog through those sites anymore--they're blocked for the rest of the day!
- The 5-Minute technique is awesome, and I have finished many much-hated laundry duties that way.
- Along those^ lines, there's also Parkinson's Law: "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion." In other words, if you allot 2 hours for what should be a 30 minute task, you WILL fill up the 2 hours with agonizing, unproductive busywork for that task. So instead, recognize how long a task should take, then chop off like 15% of the time you think you need, and work with that (for example, you think it's a 1 hour task, so you give yourself only 45 minutes to complete it). It's kind of fun to race yourself, and you feel so accomplished--you might even feel like you have EXTRA time in the day to do other things you really want to do.
- And I really like this post from Tim Ferriss, so imma just leave it here: "'Productivity' Tricks for the Neurotic, Manic-Depressive, and Crazy (Like Me)" - http://fourhourworkweek.com/2013/11/03/productivity-hacks/
I'm in the "marrying" season of my life (everyone is getting married! What the what!), and I've had to learn to take my sister's advice: If they don't ask you for your opinion, don't give it, because if they do get (and stay) married, you'll forever be perceived as the "enemy to their love."
It's hard, because you love and care about these people and don't want to see them get hurt, but if you're really close and they're not asking, it's because they, for whatever reason, really don't want your opinion :(. So far I've found some friends don't want to ask for opinions because they already know the answer, but want to bury their heads in the sand to avoid it, so when you bring it up unsolicited, their reaction is to lash out, and stuff like this^ happens. Bad news bears all around :(.
For those of you who said you're worried your friends aren't being honest about your significant other, maybe sit down and look them straight in the eye and say, "No, for realsies. I really, REALLY want you to tell me honestly what you think, and I will not ditch you as a friend if I don't like what I hear - I promise." Sometimes friends just need the reassurance and the go-ahead :).
That's my plan, anyway, if I ever meet a dude I'm getting serious about!
@Faintly Macabre and @wee_ramekin Thank you both so much for your thoughtful and warmly respectful responses. No lie, I contemplated not even checking (it's never fun following a comment thread you've contributed to, only to discover there's like 10 people flaming you for the comment you really tried to make as gracious and genuinely contributive as possible o_0). But as usual, the Hairpin community didn't let me down, even if we didn't fully agree, and I think that's wonderful :).
To steal a quote from Ronald Reagan: "You can disagree without being disagreeable." Cheers, everyone! :)
Such an interesting article, and very interesting comments (although I can't say I've read >all< of them, as much as I want to! :).
Offering a different perspective, though, I'm a 23-year-old Christian virgin, as in, no oral, anal, or 'sex' sex, and no petting. I wasn't sexually abused as a child, I wasn't guilted or shamed about sex in my church or by my Christian parents, I've had plenty of offers of sex from guys (from dudes I was dating and dudes who were just looking for a one-night stand), I just got out of a year-long relationship with a healthy (emotionally, physically, and sexually [meaning he had no weird hang-ups or was unattracted to me, or I to him]) guy, and am just an overall healthy, happy, emotionally stable and red-blooded female ;).
So, what's my deal? From my perspective, I've been an active Christian since I was nine, and have really looked to God for help on a lot of things, and seen some absolutely horrendous things become absolutely spectacular through prayer and trying to handle the situation in a way that seemed God would encourage me to do (loving, peaceful, kind, merciful, wise, all that good stuff).
Then, when it comes to "rules" and things, I began to realize that a lot of God's "rules" made pretty good sense, and as I've gotten older, more and more of them make good sense, so I'm OK with following them.
I read somewhere (I couldn't find a reference though - sorry!) that the word we translate as "commandment" actually means "for your benefit," which I think sounds much more encouraging :). Like God was saying, "Hey, I love you all! Don't do these silly things, because they hurt you and they hurt others, OK? I'm telling you these things to make your life better, not burden you with ridiculous stuff to win my approval!"
I'm getting a bit off-topic. My point is, there are still some things that God has said are not "to our benefit" that frankly I still wrestle with as to "why" they're not OK. BUT, recently, the answer as to why sex outside of marriage was not OK became clearer to me, and I'm at peace with the answer. I could throw a lot of Christianese around that explains what Biblically healthy sex looks like (and it's the furthest thing from shame! It drives me crazy that the majority of churches don't celebrate sex! Orthodox Judaism really has a super healthy attitude about it, from what I've seen. I wish American Christians would take a similar approach :/), but then I'd sound like I was evangelizing, and I think that's disrespectful - I don't know any of you personally, and each one of you would have your own important, articulate, and legitimate questions about what I'd say, and a computer screen is waaaaaayyyyy too impersonal. So no worries, ladies - this is one Christian who isn't a "Holy Keyboard Warrior for JAY-ZUS!"
So instead of throwing out trite Christian sayings or irrelevant (to some of you) Bible verses, I'll just share what helped cement the idea in my head of, "OK, sex is meant to work within a context of a committed relationship. I get it now." Read the article below if you're interested. It's not Christian-based, from what I can tell, just straight-up science-y things in basic English: http://doctorlisalove.wordpress.com/2011/01/22/brain-research-into-the-healthy-unhealthy-impacts-of-sex-on-women-men/
There are so many different people on this forum with different perspectives and backgrounds, and I realize mine aren't popular, but I've always enjoyed how respectful and interesting the comments are, so I hope this doesn't cause an explosion. I'm sure some people who have been hurt by "Christians" and the church might disregard me, or others will want to ask questions about weird scriptures from Leviticus (I have a few answers to popular questions, but I mean a FEW), but I really don't mean to lob this out here as a way to start a religious war in the Hairpin comments. I hadn't noticed anyone offer a perspective like mine, and this is truly my way of contributing to the conversation.
That being said, I am sorry for any hurt feelings or arguments that might stem from this, especially to those of you who have been hurt by people who say they're Christians. We're not all bad, I promise :(.
Not to quote Dr. Phil, but I'm going to quote Dr. Phil:
"If he'll do it with you, he'll do it to you!"
Seriously, if you're cheating, it means you don't want to be with that person anymore (among probably many other things). So why go back to them? So you'll have a security blanket until you find the next person you can hand yourself off to, so there will be a seamless transition?
A Married Dude is right: Be single for awhile. Learn that the world doesn't end if you feel lonely for awhile.
I'm probably oversimplifying this, but those are the immediate thoughts I had reading that :/.
@olivebee Thank you for spreading the Good News about cookie butter, because that sounds positively stupendous! I Amazon'd it, and some girl was like, "Oh yeah, I used in in my Rice Krispies recipe with marshmallows, butter and cinnamon/sugar on the top."
I mean, what the what!