The Walk of Lame – On Regretting NOT Hooking Up

Right before I met my husband, I flew to another state for a graduate school interview.  After we landed, I kept running into the crew from the plane.  Turns out they were staying in the same hotel as me, including a very attractive man around my age, who I assumed was a flight attendant.  He invited me to dinner, and in a very uncharacteristic move (I had to get up early for my interview),, I agreed.  That was my idea of living on the edge!

Turns out the guy was the co-pilot and quite a hot, charming co-pilot at that.  After Cuban food and an excellent mojito, I went back to his room to see his “flight plans.”  Uh-huh.  So we were making out, and it was cool.  I didn’t feel pressured or uncomfortable, or any of those things “they” warn you about.  I was having fun.  So what did I do?  I excused myself and went back to my room to rest up for my interview (an interview, mind you, I didn’t really care about).  I think I am still feeling the sexual frustration from that night to this day.

Why did I leave my pilot friend (and myself) so unsatisfied?  I had learned somewhere along the line to assume that I would regret a casual hook-up.  I didn’t have any personal evidence for this.  There wasn’t anything at all about the situation to suggest I might regret it.  The guy was a perfect gentleman, and I really liked him.  And yet, regret was the only possibly outcome in my mind.  There was no part of me that considered the possibility that I might be glad I had hooked up with him.

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To Our Village: Please Don’t Gender Our Children

I dread the day when my little boy realizes he isn't supposed to play with Minnie and will be mocked for his exuberant cries that "Minnie have a bow!"

This post is the email I sent friends and family asking them to assist Seth and I in creating a gender-flexible, non-hetero-normative environment for our twins. 

It truly does take a village to raise a child.  All of you are part of ours, and we are grateful beyond words to have each and every one of you.

I have been thinking about this email since before my children were born, and the time has come for me to sit down and write it.  When I thought about what I most wanted to communicate here I think what it boils down to is that we need your help.  Beyond Seth and I, you form the closest circle around O and J – a circle that has the power to build the kind of world in which they grow up.  We can’t necessarily change the realities of the outside world, but we can create a buffer, an alternative, a safe place to fall, a refuge, a place where they can be who they truly are.  It is with that in mind that I ask you to open your hearts and minds and consider how you can wield the great power you have in J and O’s lives in order to help us create that safe space.

When I went into my kids’ room this morning, my sweet J was standing up in his crib, exuberant, clutching his stuffed Minnie Mouse as he does every morning.  He shouted gleefully, “Hello Minnie!  I kiss Minnie!  Minnie have a bow!”

“Hello Minnie!”  I responded.

Across the room, my precious O was clutching the matching Mickey with a sly smile on her face.  She did a little shoulder shimmie when she saw me.  The night before as we headed up to bed, she had said softly, “Minnie?” making sure her companion would be in her crib with her.

No, my son doesn’t prefer Minnie to Mickey.  The fact is, my kids don’t know the difference between Minnie and Mickey.  They call them both Minnie.  Either doll will suffice at night when they can’t go to sleep without “Minnie.”  Why?  My kids don’t know what gender is.  Yes, they are too young, but also, we haven’t taught them.

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Why I’d Love a Four-Person Marriage

Originally Appeared on elephant journal.

A few years after finding and marrying each other, Seth and I found our couple-friend soul-mates. Over the few years that followed, in an entirely platonic way, we became more than just friends. When there was something going on in one of our lives, there were four people, instead of just two, who put their heads together and figured out what to do. Instead of Seth and me planning our social schedules together, all four of us would coordinate. When one of us was being bullheaded, there were three other folks there to gently but persistently provide an “intervention.” Let me tell you, it’s a lot easier to get your partner to hear feedback on his behavior when there are two other people there backing you up!

However, the biggest thing I took away from that experience was that the business of life felt a lot less like work during that time. Life felt less burdensome and more fun. With four adults facing the world together things just felt a bit less daunting. Spending time with friends stopped feeling like it required elaborate planning or impossible scheduling feats. There just seemed to be… time.

When our couple-friend soul-mates divorced, Seth and I were devastated. We all joked that Seth and I were more upset than they were, but I think in some ways we really were. We were losing this family unit we’d created, except we didn’t have any of the motivation for wanting to move on that they had. We were perfectly happy in our sexless, four-person marriage. We hadn’t signed on for divorce.

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