I’m putting this blog on hiatus while I start school. I need to focus on both my program and submitting to sites that actually pay me! It’s possible I’ll come back to it, or maybe I’ll start blogging somewhere else.
For now, enjoy the archives or visit my portfolio at jerabrown.com/portfolio for articles I’m writing across the web!
Thanks for reading.
I just finished up the last of the major remodeling I’m going to do on my house. Now it’s on the market! I’m selling it to have a fresh start when I move to Chicago.
I’m very proud of the work I and my peeps have done to this place, and I wanted to share.
The Surrender: An Erotic Memoir is author Toni Bentley’s personal account of finding fulfillment through the act of anal sex.
In some ways Bentley writes with a laudable honesty, exposing desires, fears, and habits that are deeper and/or darker than many authors dare go. I even found myself at times disliking her as she revealed disrespectful ways she thought of and treated others . . .
Read the rest on: Kinsey Confidential
I created a new blog! It’s meant to be a group blog, so I’ll be doing most of my personal writing here.
About the blog:
Church of the Scarlet Letter seeks to redeem a symbol of shame and exile, the scarlet letter, by using it to create community. We seek individuals who’ve been scarred by rejection due to things they believe, things they’ve done, or simply who they are.
This blog is based on the belief that we are all beloved children of God and accepted just as we are.
There are currently two posts. One by me, and one by my awesome friend Jen. Check them out! And email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in writing for it!
Recently I’ve gotten to spend quality time with two amazing women: Isha and Jess.
Isha and I have known each other for a little over a year. I’ve been dating her husband (Theo) since last February. I don’t talk about him much on the blog because he’s a doctoral student, hella busy, and I don’t always get to see much of him. Isha and I dated briefly last spring and have recently started again. I’ve been spending more time with the two of them over the past few months. I feel comfortable at their place, even hanging out on the couch while they do other things. We talk about everything; we cuddle; I feel so at peace being myself around them that I get chatty like a little kid.
Jess lives in North Carolina. She messaged me last fall on OKCupid. We have more in common than anyone I’ve ever met. She’s queer, polyamorous, kinky, a blogger, a hiker, and a Christian. Since we connect on so many levels, it feels like we’ve known each other for a long time. Here are a couple of Jess’s blogs: one about Polyamory and one about Faith.
I had big firsts with both women last month: my first sleepover with Isha (and our first time sleeping together), and the first time Jess and I met in person. Both experiences have me thinking about dating women and how I handle poly relationships.
My sleepover with Isha went wonderfully. We made dinner, watched August Osage County, cuddled, had sex, then spooned to sleep. (I’ll come back to this).
Meeting Jess was also wonderful, but the trip was tainted by health issues. Still poorly adjusting to sleeping alone and the stress of moving, I keep getting sick. The whole weekend I was coping with low energy, an upset stomach, and debilitating allergies. I just wasn’t completely myself.
Before the trip, Jess and I had flirted a bit, talked about doing some kink scenes together, but mostly just conversed like old friends. Once there, nothing physical happened besides some spooning, and I have to wonder whether things things would’ve been different if I’d been physically fit. As I was, congested and weak, I wasn’t about to start anything, and I’m guessing she felt the same.
In both situations I was nervous about the physical, because I’m still not as comfortable pursuing the physical or romantic with women. In the past I’ve more easily related to those of my gender platonically since I have years of experience being Louise to someone’s Thelma versus Portia to someone’s Ellen. Often, in spite of mutual attraction, my relationships gravitate toward the platonic. And it’s hard to tell whether this trend is because of clumsy flirting attempts and lack of an initiator due to nerves and fear of rejection, or just not having the right chemistry or spark. (By the way, I wrote about this in more detail on misbehaved.com).
Wanting to explore relationships with women feels like wanting to learn to dance. Sometimes you just know that that would be something you’d really enjoy if you get past the learning curve. I’m attracted to women. I have all sorts of desires that can only be fulfilled with them – and not just physical.
Because of this, when I’m really attracted to a woman, stuff feels complicated. I’m nervous like someone who’s just starting to dance, and I’m also nervous like someone who’s attracted to someone else and putting herself out there.
I’ve made myself unnecessarily nervous about the physical and romantic aspects of my relationship with Isha. Touching her feels right – everything from kissing her cheek to more intimate things. Sometimes I feel clumsy about it, but when our bodies touch it feels so good and natural. I’m not all of a sudden going to feel like an Isle of Lesbo sex goddess, and it’s frankly in my nature to be anxious. But the fact that things continue to go well between us feels relieving. I desire her, she desires me and I’m grateful for that.
With Jess, I’m realizing that I’m overthinking everything. I’m not sure whether we’ll add a physical or romantic component to our relationship. I’ve been trying to figure out what I want from her and realized I’ve only met her once and it’s ok that I don’t know! Eventually we’ll talk about what we want from each other, and as all things tend to, I bet it changes over time. I think my tendency to analyze everything to death is a blessing and a curse. You know how if you stare at a word long enough, it can look like it’s misspelled? I think I tend to overthink many things to the point where nothing seems natural.
Mostly I want her to know that she’s sexy – both physically and intellectually. And whatever happens between us, I’m excited that she messaged me last fall and that she’s part of my life. And just so Isha doesn’t feel left out, I should report that she’s damn sexy too. Honestly folks, I feel so friggin’ lucky right now. I get to share some pretty amazing people’s hearts and sometimes their beds. I get to explore intimacy with quality people, and they make my life feel very rich.
A while back I had lunch with a friend who is an atheist. She wanted to meet up after my post about wanting to find a way to talk to those with more conservative faith. During lunch we shared where we find peace. I find peace in knowing that I’m not alone, that I believe there’s a higher power that guides me. She finds peace knowing that she is alone, and that she has a humble place in the universe that she is in charge of.
We come from different worldviews, but to me there’s a great solace in being able to understand where she comes from and respect it. She’s found her peace, and I’ve found mine. In this place of mutual respect, we can rise above our differences and find other places to connect and relate.
Manna and I are hanging out about once a week now, and I’m so grateful. You need those people in your life that know you so well that can prove even at your worst you’re still lovable.
We’re in a healthier place after our breakup. I think this is in part due to our open relationship. We both know there are many ways someone can fit into your life, and that knowledge has allowed us the opportunity to find what’s best for the two of us.
It’s an affectionate and loving place, but one where we understand there will be someone else out there for both of us that is perhaps more compatible as a primary partner.
I think, regardless, he’ll be a partner for life.