I have spent this Valentine’s Day season wrapped in the loving embrace of feminist friends and family who have expressed their care and affection through thoughtful cards, shared meals, and copious amounts of cocktails. I have been reminded numerous times how bootleg a holiday is that celebrates heterosexual coupledom at the expense of all other kinds of love, and I have felt blessed to be reminded of all the other kinds of love and care I experience routinely.
But can I talk about how sometimes a sister just wants to get laid?
I mention this not because it goes against all that I laid out at the start of this post, but because, for me, the love I get from friendship and family has not coincided with anything approaching a vibrant sex life and, if I can keep it 100, that’s not something I feel great about. Real talk, this year I have felt my lack of sexual intimacy more keenly than I have for a while. For a long time, I felt like I could go on forever being celibate, but now I’m not so sure.
It’s been almost five years since I’ve dated, or kissed, or touched another person in a non- platonic way. After a bad breakup and a series of hilariously tragic dating mishaps and misadventures, I took a little hiatus. One year became two years, two years became three years and, before I knew it, I had spent almost half a decade sleeping alone. Some of my friends wondered why I haven’t just exploded or looked for a rifle and watchtower. There are lots of reasons.
I’ve also been busy getting my career together and living my life. And it’s not like my life has been sad and pitiful. Quite the contrary. Plus, loving and loving on myself is a delicious pleasure. I definitely know what I like and am more than happy to lavish myself with orgasms. But I do miss touching, kissing, and hugging another person—especially since there is so little space for such activities outside of romantic relationships.
Owning this desire has been a journey. Putting yourself out there can be scary. And with so much foolishness in the world, it can be perversely easier to pour yourself into activism or scholarship rather than working up the nerve to holler at a cutie—or maybe it’s just me?
The fact is, however unfeminist it may sound, after this epic dry spell, I definitely have trouble thinking of myself as someone that other people might find sexy. But, then again, I had trouble with that ish before. And, as I’ve been told time and time again, the energy you put out there is what attracts people. So, I have to feel to sexy to attract others? But feeling attractive to others makes me feel sexy. Color me confused.
Then again, I have noticed that folks who I might find busted and disgusted and that ooze negative energy, but who fit particular aspects of the beauty spectrum—thin, able-bodied, cisgender, for example—don’t necessarily have trouble getting their mack on. I’m not saying all thin, able-bodied cis folks are just fucking with reckless abandon, but I am saying that some shit matters more than others—even in so-called progressive queer spaces. Take it from someone who puts the “B” in LGBTQIA.
Still, I’m trying to make an earnest effort in pursuit of some good loving. What I do know that you have to do more than talk about it, you gotta be about it. So, excuse me while I clear out the tumbleweeds.
Have you experienced an epic (or not so epic) dry spell? What’s been your post-dry spell experience? How have you gotten back in the saddle?