I've been doing a lot of thinking lately about where I'm going with my life and how I want to get there.

I've had a pretty good idea of what I want to do for a long time. I really want to be involved in sex education. I think that's a way for me to be a teacher, which really appeals to me, and help people, which is really important to me, and be an activist, which I think everyone should do. Sure, not everybody can be an activist about everything, but I think we can all make a contribution, however small, to some world progress we think is important. It's more a question of caring about the world and the beings in it and letting that affect your behavior than organizing rallies.

That said, I'm having a moment of hesitation about my life plan now that I've got my undergrad degree in hand and the possibilities of what I could be doing are wide open. I could live anywhere, I could work at almost anything. I could get my masters (in human sexuality) or not. I could live for the whole year with my best friend or not. I could travel. I could settle down. It's so endless.

I'm not operating under the illusion that I need to know what I'm going to be doing for the rest of my life. I'm just at a point where I can really, truly decide what I want to do now and the myriad choices are a little more overwhelming than I expected. It's kind of cool, but also kind of scary.

The World Provides

Life, the universe, and everything are pretty amazing sometimes. As in surprising and challenging and I'm amazed amazing. If you read here, you know I wrote this...
"I've been doing a lot of thinking and my conclusion is this: I'm not in a primary relationship (of any kind) and I want to be. So I need to start acting like that's the truth instead of ignoring it. Time to communicate what I actually need, to be clear with new partners. I want cuddles and talking in low voices and doing things together that aren't sex and comfort and familiarity with body and mind and someone to do things with and a partner in crime and someone to call me on my shit and the ability to fight sometimes and have it be okay. I want to actually get closer. I want love."
...about two weeks ago.

Well, the world seems to have provided. Ironically enough, I've started spending a lot of time with S's best friend X. X and I slept together with S there (and participating a little) about two weeks ago, and I went to visit X in Santa Cruz for four days the other weekend. He's loving and spiritual and all these things that I haven't had in my life for so long. It's kind of nuts and I have no idea what's going to happen, but I'm going with the flow. X has moved up to the city now to live with S (I know) so I'm seeing him a lot.

I don't have much else to say. I haven't been blogging very much because I've been kind of reevaluating my life and what I want to be doing with it and that's eating up my brain. Hopefully I'll come to some conclusions soon and then I'll have more to say.


A disorganized and possibly rambling continuation of my thoughts on my privileged stupidity when it comes to money: how did I get this way?

I try to be fairly open about the fact that I come from a very privileged family. For starters: I'm white, started out as Catholic, and my family has a lot of money. My dad is an executive for start-up biotech companies, which means he does very well financially. My mother works very part time and doesn't make much; she could afford to make that choice. Both of my parents are college educated. They both came from upper-middle-class white families. My background is a continuation of theirs.

We did not talk about money in my family when I was growing up. Apparently, it's partly because my father really hates to. I think it's a combination of his being proud of how much he makes and wanting to spend it on his wife and children (quite the patriarchal sentiment, that) and feeling awkward about being richer than most people and living in luxury. Not ridiculous luxury, but luxury nonetheless. There's a nice big dose of white, wealthy guilt in my family and the way it manifests itself is that we DO NOT talk about money.

My dad hands his credit card to waiters at restaurants before they bring him the check, and he just signs it. My mother doesn't check the price tags of things we buy at the grocery store or jeans at the mall. I don't know how much money my dad makes in a year, or in a month, or in a week, or in an hour. I don't know how much our mortgage costs. I don't know how much our food costs. Off the top of my head, I don't even know how much this computer cost.

Maybe sharing all of this is just rubbing the privilege in people's faces, and I shouldn't. I guess my point, though, is that things really shouldn't be this way. One of the things about privilege is that it allows you not to be aware of things like money or race or gender or sexuality.

If you're white, that's supposedly the default race and most white people don't even have to think about their race until they're confronted with a minority person who's bringing it up. I think white people who give in to this option of ignorance are socially irresponsible. I think financially privileged people who give in to the option of ignorance about money are socially irresponsible.

I hate that my parents didn't talk about money just because we didn't have to talk about it. Just because we didn't need to discuss what we couldn't afford or what we needed to miss out on due to lack of funds doesn't mean we shouldn't have been talking about what we could afford and how special that was. It's something I needed to be aware of.

Yes, I heard from time to time that we were lucky people and that we shouldn't take it for granted, but the taking for granted was happening on a daily basis and that's a much stronger message.

I probably won't ever be truly poor. I won't know what that's like. I don't want to let that stop me from feeling empathy for people who are poor or from appreciating what I have. I don't want to let it spoil me, which it seems in part to have done. I don't want it to keep me from being a good, responsible person. I don't want it to stop me from helping people.

So I've got to figure this shit out.

Freaking Out

So I had a series of banking fuck ups which led to my bank charging me around 100 dollars that I can't afford in fees because I was absent-minded and kept forgetting to deposit a couple of checks I'd gotten in the mail and also forgot about an automatic charge that was coming up.

This, and my reaction to it, has made it finally apparent to me that I'm completely freaked - over the moon - at the concept of being a real adult and having to be financially responsible for myself. Yes, I have a degree, and I know how to work and how to study and how to learn and some stuff about how to have relationships and I know how to make money. I just have no fucking clue how to manage money or save it or otherwise ensure that I'm not always broke and screwing up with overdraft charges and fucking up my credit. This is something I have not yet learned at all.

And that's really scary. I have a stay of execution of sorts in staying with my parents for the summer - no rent. After that, though, I'm on my own and with almost no idea of how to pull that off.

I realize now that I desperately need help, a teacher of some sort in how to do this. Soon. Now. And I need to save a lot this summer and get it under control. If I screw up my credit (I don't have cards, thankfully, so it hasn't happened yet), that's very hard to undo. I do not want that.

Also, I'm completely broke now and don't get paid until next week. It's so ironic and stupid to be this privileged, living in a nice house, typing on a nice computer, with a pretty degree I'm lucky enough not to have paid for myself, and yet to be so clueless with money that I can't even handle small life expenses. It's such a product of being spoiled, and I'm frankly ashamed of it.

What good can I do with my privilege if I just destroy it by being spoiled and ignorant? I need to get this shit figured out so I can devote my time (and time is money) and money and life to doing good things and helping people.

Word Vomit: My Life Since Graduation

I haven't blogged in a while because I've been feeling again like I don't know what to say. A lot has been going on in my internal life, and it's a little hard to pin it all down and have it figured out enough to share it with other people.

Graduating college and moving across the country (again) but this time moving away from upstate New York for good has been kind of hard on me. I'm missing my friends in New York, and I'm missing the two pretty awesome lovers I'd started seeing not long before I left (curse my timing), and I'm missing the admittedly stressful busy life I had there. I'm kind of reeling at the end of my college life, my mode of being for the last four years, and also to a certain extent the end of my childhood. (Or adolescence or whatever.)

I'm feeling the fact that my friends from San Francisco mostly don't actually live here anymore. I'm lonely.

The worst thing right now is that a major reason I came back west at all this summer was to be available to explore the relationship I started with S when I was here over winter break. We've been talking over the internet for months, talking about what we'd do when I got here and making all sorts of loosely imagined plans. I was very excited to see him.

For a variety of reasons, though, he seems not to be making himself available to me, and I don't think he wants to pursue the relationship anymore. Maybe he never did and my expectations were just too high; I don't know. I haven't had a chance to talk to him about it, as I think he may be avoiding me. We've only hung out with other people there. From small hints, though, it seems like he's no longer that interested.

I'm disappointed, to say the least. Even in the last few weeks he'd talked about how excited he was that he'd get to see me soon. I was very much looking forward to actually getting to spend time with him. Yet it just hasn't been happening.

I've gone on a few dates with other people, had a little sex. It's been pretty unfulfilling, and I know it's in the absence of doing anything to take care of my emotions. I don't even really have friends here. I don't have the possibility of a primary relationship, which is what I was so eager to explore with S. It's difficult for this transition to be so different from what I was expecting.

It's really hard for me to admit that I want to be in a relationship, that I want to really get to know someone, that I want to work toward intimacy. It feels so unhip, and I almost feel weak that I can't just put it aside until it's more convenient and enjoy the sex and the eventual friendships for now. As soon as I get anything going, I'll just be leaving again. Seems sort of silly to try and find closeness now, anyway.

My body's not letting me put it off, though; I'm feeling more and more shut down as I try. It's clearly time for me to do something differently.

I've been doing a lot of thinking and my conclusion is this: I'm not in a primary relationship (of any kind) and I want to be. So I need to start acting like that's the truth instead of ignoring it. Time to communicate what I actually need, to be clear with new partners. I want cuddles and talking in low voices and doing things together that aren't sex and comfort and familiarity with body and mind and someone to do things with and a partner in crime and someone to call me on my shit and the ability to fight sometimes and have it be okay. I want to actually get closer. I want love.

Easier said to myself than done. Now I have to say it to other people, prospects, and to encourage it to happen without forcing it. It's all such a delicate balance. I have to find that tightrope, though, and start walking it, because it's the right thing for me right now and ignoring it is getting me nowhere.
On living, loving, learning, and fucking with the materials I've got at hand.

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