Thursday, August 8, 2013

some like it tepid


i recently noticed on my facebook feed that two people that i know (we’re facebook friends, whatever that means now) are engaged to be married. these two men are in a very open relationship, and have been in a very open relationship for the majority of the time that i have known them, which is about six months into their relationship.  i know this because another friend of mine was dating one of them, so it is impossible for these two to deny this fact. i also know that this is the case because the other tried to sleep with me. they have now been together for well over three years. i call their relationship... very open... because... well that is what i call two people who state they are in a relationship but every weekend, or even every night even...  are aggressively seeking a sexual partner or a third. 

i am old fashioned. maybe a bit of a romantic, and i am stating this on my blog because i know neither party involved in this rant would ever read this, but i think their marriage is bullshit. i am really happy for people who get married and meet the person that they love, and feel like they want to spend their life with that person. i don’t even judge open relationships. i think that after awhile, the sex in a relationship can become monotonous and boring, or possibly a couple is using it as a safety net incase something does happen... but openly seeking sex partners is a very different story. if sex means that much to you, then you should probably not be in a relationship, and really, what’s the point in getting married if that is what you want to do. 

when i get into an argument with someone about this i pose my rebuttal like this. are you in an open relationship because it is #trendy, or are you in an open relationship because you actually think that realistically, this is what modern relationships look like. nine out of ten times they will say that it is a modern approach to relationships. no one wants to be “trendy”... and when i am told this, i then ask, how would you feel about a polyamorous relationship. this is something that right now in our culture, is very taboo, and i am not saying that it will ever be as accepted as open relationships, but what is the difference really. i guess one could argue that in one you are inviting someone into your bedroom for a night, and in the other you are inviting someone into you life for awhile, but quintessentially, what is the difference. personally i would probably be up for neither. 

i am going to be very honest about this, and i can’t speak for other cities, (but as people seem to tell me whenever i make a generalized statement about gay men in toronto... they are the same everywhere) but here is the real reason so many gay men in toronto have open relationships. social status. i live in a city where even dating is all based on social status. how much you make, who you are friends with, what parties you go to, how big your muscles are/how thick is your beard. no one is actually looking for love. they are looking for what is better around the corner. they aren’t looking to build a life with someone. they are looking for someone who can help them network or further their career. good luck with that in twenty years when you are in your forties and realize that you are with someone that you despise, and are mature enough to understand that relationships are about companionship, meeting someone that amazes you, and that you amaze, and yes... even sex, but finding ways to be open with each other about your sexual needs. i guess i am an idealist when it comes to this, and possibly this is why i am single.

Monday, June 10, 2013

rainy days and mondays


sometimes i wonder how much of my adult life has been wasted with thoughts of anxiety and depression. it isn’t fun. there are small windows of time that i can remember being actually ok. normal. mentally stable. for anyone who doesn’t suffer from anxiety, which seems to be my main issue, it is really hard for them to understand what it is that makes it so hard to deal with. their are days where i can’t get out of bed. where i force myself to sleep so i don’t have to think about the things that are stressing me out. there are days where you think that it would be easier to throw myself in front of a car then go to work. 

as i sit here listening to the rain that has been falling outside my window this monday evening i have to wonder when i will actually feel ok. right now, i do not feel ok. about seven years ago now, after going through a fairly substantial break-up with someone, and spending a week laying in my bed, calling in sick to work, calling in sick to friends, dealing with the stress of having someone i cared about move out of my apartment and out of my life, i identified that i may in fact suffer from issues of anxiety. there were small triggers that lead me to believe this before. for example breaking down in tears as i felt like people were swarming me on a crowded subway platform, or freaking out at a barrista when they didn’t make my grande caramel americano properly, and having that ruin my whole day, but until this point i didn’t think i actually had a mental health problem. around that time i started taking a medication that i would continue to take for about six years. four years after taking that, at the insistence of a now ex, i started to take a second medication for a side effect of that medication. about six months after that i started to take a third medication for a side effect of the second medication. and about a year after that i started to need to take attivan on a semi regular basis. 

last summer i was taking three pills daily and a fourth whenever i felt like those three were not enough. there are periods of time where i actually don’t remember conversations with people, or texts that i sent, or many of the interactions i had with people on a regular basis. there is about a week of time i hesitate to say, that i don’t actually remember happening but know that it did happen from the memories of friends and family. a little more then a year ago i stopped taking all of the medications. cold turkey. for anyone who has ever taken anything for anxiety or depression, this is very dangerous. i actually didn’t notice, possibly because i felt like i was more dangerous when i was on them. for about six months i felt great. i even didn’t feel depressed over the winter which has always been a really terrible time for me. i felt like everything was going to be ok. sure i would have slight instances in my life where i felt like i was having a hard time dealing with things but it was few and far between. it was only in the past couple of months that i started to feel like things were not going as smoothly as they once had. possibly it was that i had actively started to date again. the thought of dating anyone is a constant stress in the back of my mind, as it has always been something that has brought out the worst in me. possibly it was a winter that didn’t seem to end or a fairly dismal spring when i had spent four months thinking that there was a light at the end of a tunnel. the tunnel being an also terrible winter.

i started to feel those moments again where i would be on a streetcar on my way home and start to cry because something got stuck in my head. my dead end job. my apartment being a mess. not having the life i thought i should have at the point in my life. or waking up in the morning and realizing that i would rather hang myself from a light fixture in my apartment then go outside and deal with people. i have tried therapy before but found one of two things. that it opened up way to many things that i didn’t want to be opened up, or in the cases of group therapy realized that sometimes my issues can seem inconsequential when i sit in a room full of other people. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

we all make mistakes... i wore boot cut jeans once


i want everything i say here to be taken with a grain of salt. i am not a self-hater, nor do i hate the idea of ‘pride’. i am older, maybe a little more bitter, and possibly a bit more realistic about what being proud of being a homosexual means to me. over the years i have been to my share of pride parades, drank in church st. beer gardens, and partied all night. i am not as innocent as i might try to make myself sound. however this year, the only thing i could feel after this years week of pride was a sense of sadness.
this year as i went out, i found myself bored with the idea of getting drunk, hitting on guys, and frigging the night away. i spent my sunday, the day of toronto’s pride parade at home, watching the third season of fringe... which by the way is really good. my friends, were out getting day drunk in parks and on the street. i don’t enjoy getting day drunk. i find it exhausting and generally puts me to sleep. 
when i go out now and i see others, using this weekend to prove to heterosexuals that it is ok to be a slut for one weekend. that it is ok to abuse drugs and alcohol for our cause, i think of all the reasons that it took so long for homosexuals to be recognized in civil unions in north america, and in some areas still are fighting for this right. maybe it’s because on the one week(end) a year we act like sexual heathens, and our morals go out the window.
when my starbucks barista asks me the day after if i had a good weekend, and to tell me that she is still covered in glitter... i don’t feel proud. i feel ashamed that this is what i amount to in her eyes. a stereotype. 
don’t get my wrong. i don’t think anyone should be judged for their choice of sexual proclivities... i am again... not saying i am an angel, but is this really what we need to show the rest of the world. gay’s don’t have any sort of historical culture. we don’t have a colourful history that could be studied in textbooks. we have a couple of events, and a couple of people that have shaped how we are viewed over the last fifty years, and i feel as though that isn’t much. when we show the public that this is what we do when left to our own devices, it is a slap in the face to the people that choose to live a different sort of life. i have no problem with saying i am a homosexual, however that also does not make it wrong that once a year i don’t want to wear hot pants and ride a float, shooting lubricant out of super soaker waterguns. 
sometimes when i look at the pedestrians that attend the parade... and when i say that i mean, the non gay, lesbian, or trans community, i see the trash of the trash... not because they are necessarily being supportive, but because they are laughing. i don’t want to be remembered by my nephews, that are toddlers right now, that this is my life. i want them to be proud of their uncle and see a strong individual who had to deal with a lot of shit in order to be happy with the person they are, and not rebel against the norm in order to give people what they want to see for entertainment value which in some people minds equates to acceptance.