Just over a year ago, a friend texted me. ‘You know,’ she said, ‘When you’re discussing with Kristina Lloyd on Facebook the fact that there’s no anal sex in Fifty Shades of Grey and that that’s ridiculous, *everybody* can see that.’
She didn’t mean *everybody*, of course. I’m not stupid enough to have a Facebook profile that’s wide open to the general public. But she did mean my mum, my aunts, my old boss, friends of friends …
Something needed to change. I needed somewhere where I could write freely about the erotica I was reading and writing, and so I asked Kristina how I’d go about setting up a blog under a pseudonym. How would I get followers? Who would read my stuff?
‘DM authors that you’re already talking to on Twitter,’ she said, or something along those lines. ‘Tell them what you’re doing. And they’ll follow you.’
She was right, they did. People are nice. But anyway, more on that later.
For a few months there was no blog, just a Twitter account under the handle @semisubmissive. Blog wise, I didn’t know where to start. And then one Saturday afternoon the boy came round. At one point, he mentioned that he’d tweeted an author about an erotica novel he’d read. ‘Weird,’ I thought, ‘I didn’t see that tweet.’
What I did next is perhaps a breach of trust, but I needed to know what was going on. More about the breach of trust stuff later, too. When he left, I looked up the author and found the conversation he’d been talking about. The account he’d used was linked to a sex blog, but there were photos, and I knew it was him.
I called a friend, completely stunned. ‘He has a sex blog,’ I told her. A sex blog. A sex blog. A sex blog. The words sounded weird in my mouth. Erotica was one thing, but I’d been sleeping with a sex blogger? For a year? Why would a sex blogger want to have sex with me?
We ended our fuck buddy arrangement the following day. The blog I could sort of handle, the fact that he was now openly admitting that he was sleeping with other people too, much less so. I’m monogamous and I have no intention of ever changing that. He’d never claimed that we were exclusive, and I’d tried not to think too hard about the fact that we probably weren’t; but hearing it confirmed hurt too much.
The story of how we started sleeping together again is long and complicated. Much of it I’ve charted here. But the blog started a few weeks after these events, in a hotel room where I was nursing my anxiety. I didn’t feel many moral qualms at that point about blogging, but nor did I expect it to become so much about him. Shortly after we got back together, I changed my twitter handle (what does semisubmissive even mean?!), wrote my first ever post and told him about it.
In a fight we were having recently, he mentioned that people have, on occasion, asked him why he tolerates this blog, why he tolerates being written about by ‘a nutcase and a stalker.’ Lovely words, those. I’ve heard worse though, namely ‘spastic,’ all the way through school, so I can take it. Plus, as I said the other day, I think people should be honest about what they think about what they read. If you think I’m a nutcase and a stalker, that’s fine: why not dare to say so in the comments section here?
I disagree with those terms, but if what they’re getting at is the intensity of my relationship (or otherwise) with him then yes, that I can see. My parents are moving house, and my mum has ‘neatened up’ my bookshelf at home by putting all the novels I read as a pre-teen back on display. When I was drying my hair last weekend, I started flicking through Berlie Doherty’s Dear Nobody and this week I reread the whole thing. It’s intense in its portrayal of teenage relationships and I recognise myself in some of the more all-consuming moments – the jealousy, the insecurity, the need to hold on to someone, to be the centre of their world…
Sure, I’m almost 30, but this is still pretty new to me.
This is my 100th post, and one of the things that’s surprised me most is that the direction the blog has taken over the past year is more dating/relationship blog than sex blog. Partly, that’s because when it comes to interacting with ‘real’ sex bloggers, I feel like a fraud, too inexperienced and vanilla to have anything truly worth saying. Which is ironic, because they’ve never been anything but supportive in return (huge shoutout to Girlonthenet here, who has been *amazing.*)
In fact, I wanted this post to be a thank you full stop, to the people who read the blog, share it, comment on it, and who themselves write great blogs. The people who make up for the complete arseholes who unfollow as soon as I write a post about depression/anxiety or mention my disability on Twitter. Where to start? The great Alison Tyler perhaps, as she’s followed since the very beginning, and is more in line with the original premise and the one to which I might, eventually, return. Kristina Lloyd, obviously (link at the top of this post). And then, in no particular order, the bloggers: Rosetintedguy (who sadly has now taken down his blog), Juniper3Glasgow, Charlieinthe, Miss Corningstone, Girl Seule, Tea4Lucy, Malin James, F Dot Leonora …
And of the course, the boy himself, without whom this wouldn’t be here at all…
…You were expecting a link to his blog? Really?!
No, but seriously. Thank you all.