[This is a back post I never posted. I’m still working my way through them, and as I still feel this way sometimes (though maybe not *quite* as intensely as before(, I’m posting it now.]
[Note: I talk a little about my sex life and intimacy in this post. If that’s too much for you, or if you’re not interested, skip this post. Thanks!]
One of the main reasons I talk about sexual assault so much, is because I hope to potentially help someone who was also sexually assaulted – to make them feel like they’re not alone…
(I know I did a lot of googling and reading any accounts people had when it first happened to me. So, if my voice could be even a little helpful to even a few people, that’s kinda what I’m going for here…)
However, I don’t know that this post accomplishes that… Maybe someone will feel the same way. Or maybe they will feel the same way about something else and this will resonate with a placeholder in their mind. But on this specific thing, my understanding is that I am in the minority – that my comfort with intimacy and sex and reversed from how most people seem to feel.
I have always been super comfortable with sex. I’ve enjoyed it, never made much of a “fuss” about it, never made people “earn” it. I’ve enjoyed a bunch of casual sex, and for the vast majority of sexual partners I’ve had, we haven’t been in anything that has resembles a real “relationship.” And I’ve certainly never, not once asked anyone to commit to me. You know, whatever. So, sex is cool.
Oh. Oh, I’m sorry… You think you’re gonna hold me to sleep? Oh, that is reserved for barely anyone in the universe. That doesn’t just happen. No.
When I left California for The Nightly Show, I had to leave the man I loved (a lot). I try not to talk about him too too much, because he’s wildly special to me. And I just want our relationship and our special-ness to be kinda private, you know? It’s our special thing. So, he comes up a little in this posts related to sexual assault (as like the saving grace). It still feels weird though, since, in my mind, our love story is precious and just for us and I never really imagined any of it being on this blog. But here we are.
Anyway, I only bring him up, because I remember vividly every thing about the night in which he first held my hand.
I remember what I was wearing. I remember how ridiculously cute he was, and the suit he was wearing. And how amaaaazing he looks in a suit. (Goodness, he looked so good.) I remember trying to meet up with him and his friends, and barely missing each other as they changed bars right before my uber arrived. And then him coming back for me. Instead of telling me to find them, he came back and found me and took me to the group, which I just thought was sweet…
The point is, I remember all of it. Heck, I’m pretty sure I remember what color the uber was that took us home later that night..
I definitely remember us being in the back seat, him on the left, me on the right. And he reached out his right hand and he grabbed mine.
I had spent the night at his apartment before that. We’d done so much other stuff. But the fact that we were holding hands… A lightening bold shook through me, like “Whoa. He likes me.” (I mean, my goodness. He’d already said, “I love you” at that point! (Granted, it had happened once almost accidentally, in a sweet monologue, just flying out of his mouth haha – We weren’t saying it all the time yet or anything.) But something about him holding my hand just made me feel giddy like, “He not only loves me. He liiiikes me. Look at this!”
I was semi-seriously with one other person before him, in which spending the night and that kind of stuff was involved. And I also vividly remember the first time that man held my hand – months into our relationship.
We were at a super fancy thing, that happened to have a place for junk food. (I know. It’s confusing, don’t worry about it.) Anyway, we got in line (with all these other people in beautiful dresses and suits), for junk food. He was ahead of me a bit to the right, and I was behind him in my dress. And we were just so super comfortable all night. He absentmindedly sent his left hand back and grabbed my right hand. It was so special, I literally took a picture.
I kid you not. I let out the quietest gasp, grabbed my phone so fast, and took a picture so that I could remember him holding my hand.
Barely anybody ever holds my hand. That’s so intimate.
But sexual assault guy looooved intimacy. Even in the short time we were involved, he held my hand many times. I remember them. I especially remember when he did it in the subway because that felt so super weird to me. We weren’t even together (like, together-together) and yet, he wanted to hold my hand in public – in front of people? I went along with it, because, I dunno anymore, really. I wanted to not hurt his feelings, or have too many needs (such as not holding hands). It seemed like a small thing in the grand scheme of life, if he wanted to hold hands. I should maybe be able to accommodate that.
And now… Now holding hands hurts. I did it with so few people. And it was so special. And now it’s something that feels tainted.
And in a desperate attempt to make it feel less tainted, I’ve now held the hands of two other guys! I went from holding hands with two guys in my life to 3 guys in one year? Jesus.
But it’s not the same. I’m not making it less tainted. I’m just making it even less special (and probably annoying the men who are doing this crazy hand-holding with me).
I don’t know if holding hands will ever (ever) be normal for me again. It might be something that’s lost now. I don’t know. I suppose we’ll see when we see!