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Afraid

amsterrock

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Sometimes I am afraid. 

I'm afraid that if I take the plunge I will never want to come back.

I'm afraid to die with regret that I never explored beyond normalcy. That I never took a chance, and was never adventurous. 

I'm afraid of losing everything I hold dear for a mistake. 

I'm afraid to step out of my comfort zone. Afraid to be wrong about myself. Afraid to be judged. 

I'm afraid to risk the perfectly happy bubble I live in. Afraid to offset the balance and comfort I have created. Why seek something more if I am perfectly content as is? Why risk this pleasant life?


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It's a conundrum.  Which will you regret more?  Are you the kind of person who places high value on security, and "what you know", or are you the kind of person who seeks adventure in other parts of your life?

I have no experience with women, but then for all practical purposes I just about don't have any experience with any other men than my husband.  I could equally say that I might regret never having that experience with a woman, as I could also say I might regret not having experience with men other than my husband.  Now this is just me - everyone sees it differently - would I risk my marriage to have an experience with another man other than my husband?  I have to ask myself the same question about an experience with a woman.  What am I willing to risk?

For some people it's worth the risk.  For me, without my husband's knowledge and agreement, I can't risk my marriage for an experience with a woman or another man.

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Security is an illusion. Things outside your control can and do happen all the time. There is no growth in security. If you are fine with not growing any more, then security is ok. But there are consequences to that too. As long as you are aware that to do nothing is also a decision you make, just like stepping outside of the comfort zone is a decision. For me the question is always which one will I regret more.

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I don't know which I'd regret more, both have unknown outcomes. So for now, I will do nothing, and re-evaluate my decision if a situation presents itself. 

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The opposite of fear is understanding. We're often afraid of the unknown and what we don't understand. Fear has a way of either paralysing or propelling us. The problem with regret is we don't experience it until after we do or don't do something, either way we learn and from those lessons there's still ways to keep growing.

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I love my life. I don't ever want to lose what I have in my husband and family situation. I've lived without sleeping with a woman so far, I know I can life without it however long I need to. Do I really really want to act on it? Hell, yes. But I've already hurt my husband this year a bit & don't want to dig in deeper. Being sneaky is new to me. It's exhilarating, but I know that I can't/don't want to live like this long-term.

But I TOTALLY get you, @amsterrock

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I have an Auntie who is about to turn 101 years of age...and, while she has led a very interesting life, she always conducted herself according to societal conventions, or 'the rules', as she calls them (which, of course, changed as the decades progressed)...

She was a practising Catholic, and unfortunately, fell in love with a divorced man called Frank, who asked her to marry him, and although she really wanted to, her mother forbade her to do so...because it would be a sin in the eyes of the Church, and she might be ex-communicated...with the result that she never married...because, she told me, Frank was the only man she ever loved... 

She also had a very close, intense friendship with another woman, called Adeline, that bordered on being a love affair...but although Adeline made her romantic feelings clear, and Auntie felt the same, she never dared take the plunge, as doing so might upset and disappoint her family and friends...and it would be a sin in the eyes of the Church...

When I went to visit my Auntie this past July, in the nursing home where she lives now, we chatted about her life, and I asked her if, in retrospect, there was anything that she would have done differently, and she replied,

'If I could do it all over again, I would tell my mother to go to hell, and marry Frank, and I would go on that cruise with Adeline and have sex with her, like she wanted me to!

In fact, I'd tell the Catholic Church and anyone who ever told me what to think or what to do to go to hell!  I really would!'

So, the moral of the story is:

Be who you are, and do what you want to do in life...because otherwise you're liable to end up sitting in a nursing home, feeling very pissed off, with lots of regrets...

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@BenedettaC That is both heartbreaking and fantastic. I love her words even though I hate that she was pressured to live life without romantic love.

Edited by N00Bi
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Dang @BenedettaC! I hope that story s true and at the same time I hope that it isn't. 

The difference is your Auntie was restricted by her community's rules and not her own views. But if she had made a commitment to Frank, would she have still gone with Adeline? 

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2 hours ago, amsterrock said:

Dang @BenedettaC! I hope that story s true and at the same time I hope that it isn't. 

The difference is your Auntie was restricted by her community's rules and not her own views. But if she had made a commitment to Frank, would she have still gone with Adeline? 

Just cos you have a Frank doesn't mean you can't have a Adeline.. sure sometimes that's not gonna work being open about your desires to your version of Frank and it doesn't mean that you'd end up happy with Adeline or that the experience would go as you hoped. Questioning has nothing to do with contentment and all you can do is find the power within and respect who you are, it takes fear out of the equation. If you can conquer that, things might be less intense and you'll have a better sense of where to go from there - good luck :)

Edited by Hungry
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On 9/8/2017 at 7:29 PM, N00Bi said:

@BenedettaC That is both heartbreaking and fantastic. I love her words even though I hate that she was pressured to live life without romantic love.

Auntie's life wasn't totally devoid of romantic love and passion... She did enjoy her time with Frank, going out to restaurants and nightclubs in NYC...and playing in lots of golf tournaments together in upstate NY...and she and Adeline spent plenty of time together too, despite declining the opportunity to go on the particular cruise she mentioned...

When she went into the nursing home a few years ago, my brother and I had to clear out her apartment, and found a box full of letters, cards and photos, many of which were from her time with Adeline... There were all sorts of tokens of love in that box - affectionate letters...poems...and even some illustrations and watercolours (including a couple of portraits of my Aunt signed by A) ...together with lots of wonderful photographs of them both on their various trips together (Mexico, Brazil, Caribbean islands, etc.) looking blissfully happy... 

So, although ultimately she didn't marry Frank or sleep with Adeline, she did have a love affair of sorts with each of them...and in the grand scheme of things, that is certainly significant...

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6 hours ago, amsterrock said:

Dang @BenedettaC! I hope that story s true and at the same time I hope that it isn't. 

The difference is your Auntie was restricted by her community's rules and not her own views. But if she had made a commitment to Frank, would she have still gone with Adeline? 

Sadly, it is a true story...

Up to a certain point (when she turned 60 and began to question alot of things), she actually internalized the views of the Church, which were also the views of her family, so for a considerable part of her life her perspective on sexuality and other aspects of so-called 'morality' were very conservative (although she was never actually homophobic)...  

She had three nephews and one niece (me), all of whom she treated like her own children, and all of whom were bisexual or gay...and once we had all come out and she realized that, her view of the Church (which is totally homophobic) changed drastically, and she actually even stopped believing in a supreme deity and became agnostic...

Considering how free-thinking she became later in life, I suspect that if she had been married to Frank and then met Adeline later on, she may have opted for what some women here on Shy refer to as 'gendered monogamy' (one man and one woman)...which is actually polyamory, although she would probably call it 'polygamy'...ha, ha, ha...

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On 9/5/2017 at 6:38 PM, amsterrock said:

I don't know which I'd regret more, both have unknown outcomes. So for now, I will do nothing, and re-evaluate my decision if a situation presents itself. 

I'm in the same boat. Wanting more than hubby can give but not wanting to cheat... Just explore this desire for adventure

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I wish there was a "load from previous save" option in life, so we could make mistakes or try things, then go back. 

Edited by amsterrock
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Why doesn't life have a back space key?! I've tried talking to.a few friends about my curiousness. It scares me but there's this fire I can't extinguish.

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20 hours ago, amsterrock said:

I wish there was a "load from previous save" option in life, so we could make mistakes or try things, then go back. 

I really wouldn't like to see the consequences of that!  

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How do we make fantasy a reality ... We can only be stuck in our heads for so long... I always want to seize the moment because life is an adventure... I've always believed that any couple needs to be doing their own things in order to thrive together... Married for 8 and together for 12... I wouldn't want to give that up, but we need to grow together and separately at times...

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@amsterrock - You say, 'Why seek something more if I am perfectly content as is? Why risk this pleasant life?' But if you are considering your various fears in the way you are, and posing these questions, then you really aren't perfectly content as is, are you? 

Some people really do live in an opaque bubble of their own creation, and manage to be totally oblivious to the world and possibilities outside it...but you don't appear to be one of those people, and that's a very good thing...

The very fact that you are engaging in a kind of risk assessment shows that you have an adventurous side struggling to get out...

You know the saying, 'Nothing ventured, nothing gained'... Well, I can honestly say that in over 30 years of being an out bisexual woman, I have never encountered anyone who said that she regretted going for it and having sex with a woman, or many women...or coming out, or living a bisexual or lesbian lifestyle...not one single person... But I have encountered plenty of women who have said that they wished they had gone for it sooner...or had sex with lots more women...or had more relationships with women... 

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@amsterrockI agree with what @BenedettaC said. We think we're in a 'perfectly happy bubble' because that is the picture we painted ourselves as the perfect life from a young age.

But what if the perfect life is living it to the full and doing what makes you happy. Trust me, everything you said has gone through my mind too, and still does. There are times I've just wanted to run away and hide to try and figure everything out, but it wouldn't make any difference. There’s a rather large piece of the puzzle missing, that I need in order to be happy

There's no right or wrong answer unfortunately. Only you will know what feels right at the time, and you're right, you should decide what to do when the opportunity presents itself. You've already analysed this in your head so your gut instinct should kick in when you need it and you seem pretty sensible so I'm sure you'll figure it out along the way.

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It is always so challenging and scary to make a change in our lives.

Societal pressure that is present throughout ones life can make

us question the desires we have. I have pressed down the

strong kinetic desire and draw I have to women and keep

pressing the feelings down.

I have fallen in love with several friends who I feel an

almost unbearable sense of connection with.

I resist the urge to hold one...

I resist the urge to place my lips on another.

I resist the urge to feel the soft skin of her neck.

I resist the urge to feel her breasts pressed against mine.

I come so close to telling them just how I feel 

and this unbearable bubble of fear comes to the surface and

I choke it down, once again...after years of repressing it.

Eventually I distance myself from her as a way to move on

and stop suffering in silence. 

It is painful to not live my truth...

the pain of telling my family-who I have build is more frightening

at this moment.

We are all here in this web of desire and responsibility and

roles...

What you said struck such a cord in me and I'm sure others

here too. 

We will find our way.

Together we can discuss our journey.

@amsterrock

 

 

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