Today has been a relief for me - not because it's been easy or relaxing (just the opposite in fact), but because I got my period. I was a little bit afraid that I was pregnant. I'm actually really upset with myself over this. I plan to never let myself be in that situation again. In the past I have had completely unprotected sex (though not in over 3 years) but only either the day before or day after my period. That was stupid enough and I told myself that I wouldn't ever do that again. So this time I've been more careful. I've been using a condom every time, but then about two weeks ago one of them had to go and break on me at the absolute worst time of the month. The next morning I took Plan B. If anyone ever has to do that, then don't go on a 14 hour car ride afterwards. I never get car sick, but I think sitting in the back seat of the car made the nausea worse. I really thought that I was going to throw up there for a while.
Anyway, back to the point. I'm really glad I was able to get that, but it's only about 80 or 85 percent effective. Also, I think there is a psychological component. Whenever a condom is used I can see that it worked and that stuff didn't get through. This time I saw that it was broken but there's really no way to know for a while whether or not the Plan B worked. At this point I'm a little mad at myself for only relying on one method. While I have stuck to my resolution to always use protection, I don't think I have been quite responsible enough. I don't want to have to use emergency contraception again. It was unpleasant and I worry about the effectiveness of it. Not to mention how freaked out I was by the broken condom. By the way, that is the LAST time I will ever use the ultra thin kind. Lover boy can complain all he wants about the thicker ones - he's just going to have to deal with them. Or not if he so chooses. He doesn't have to have sex with me if he doesn't want to.
For now I'm angry at my university health insurance for not covering birth control. Unfortunately, there's no way for me to complain about it without the possibility of getting suspended or possibly expelled for having sex. I'm going to have to go to Planned Parenthood to get some type of birth control. I intend to do that in the next week or so. I've kind of been putting it off. It's not all that close and my schedule's crazy. I can work it in but I've been dragging my feet on it a little. New experiences always make me nervous. I was kind of nervous about getting the Plan B too, but that was urgent so I did it.
In the future, maybe I'll actually start posting regularly though possibly not for a month or so. I have to go through graduation and other stuff that is keeping me busy. After that I may be unemployed for a while, so then it'll be likely that I'll write more.
I've been thinking a lot about sex lately. I'm trying to figure out what things I should and shouldn't be doing and with who. I had a discussion with my roommate recently where she said that she was thinking about having sex with someone and she was trying to make the decision based on which would hurt her more. She had come to the conclusion that she was going to be more emotionally hurt by not having sex with him than by having sex with him. I think that this is a pretty good way to decide something like that. I think that in the past I've made wrong decisions regarding sex, both with having sex with a certain person and with not having sex with a different person. Both of those decisions hurt me more than the opposite decision would have. So I'm trying to use that standard now.
To make a long story short, I fooled around with one of my friends earlier this week. It was on Valentine's Day and we both got kinda drunk and then started making out and stuff. It wasn't because of the alcohol; I'm pretty sure that I would have done the same had I been sober. I've been thinking about this since then and I really don't think I've hurt myself emotionally at all in this case. So I have no problem with that particular decision.
What bothers me in this case is something that I'm pretty sure has to do with the way that I grew up. I was taught that I wasn't supposed to have sex before I was married. That was something that I never could bring myself to want for myself. Anyway, I don't have guilt feelings about sex, but I still regard it in ways that I wish I didn't. I sometimes wish that I could just have sex without thinking so much about it. On the one hand, thinking about important things is a good thing, but I do it to a bit of an extreme. I wish I could just have sex and then go on with life.
I feel like I've missed out on some things because I'm wound kind of tight. I'm graduating from college in May and I just wish I had experienced more while here (not just sex - everything). I really only have myself to blame. I am painfully shy at times. I couldn't even make out with that friend this past week without drinking. I have no idea how to go about serious flirting with anyone. I spend my weekends alone when I have plenty of friends that I could be hanging out with. One of my friends recently asked me if I minded that he invited himself over to my place sometimes. I told him that I didn't mind at all - I like it when he comes over. So then he asked me why I didn't just invite him over myself. I realized that he was totally right. I never seek anything out which is why I always end up alone. I wish I could change this. I just don't know how.
I've been single for about six months. In May, I broke up with my boyfriend of a year and a half. While it was a good relationship, I know that ending it was the right thing to do. I've been kinda lonely since then. Many of my good friends have graduated and left. Some of them are still around, but I haven't spent a lot of time with them this semester. I haven't really even considered the possibility of dating. Since last March (I was in a long distance relationship, which is why I didn't have any dates between March and May), I've been on one date. It was a good date and all and I would like to ask that guy out again, but I've just been too busy and I think he has, too.
Truthfully, I don't have a huge preference about whether I'm in a relationship or not. There are a lot of wonderful things about being with someone that I certainly miss, but I'm okay with being single. My sister was never single for more than about 2 months at a time since she was 15 and I think she may have missed out. I know that she's happily married and all, but I can't imagine myself being that way. I think that people learn a lot about themselves by being in relationships and by being single.
The problem with all of this is that I'm not really allowing myself the possibility of being in a relationship. Every time the thought enters my mind I push it out. While I don't think that it is a negative thing to not be dating, I think that the state that I am currently in is a bad one to be in. I'm fine being single, but I don't want to disallow myself to date, which is what I'm currently doing. I think that I'm in a negative emotional state at the moment. I'm not sure if it's because I am not allowing myself relationship possibilities or if it's just because I'm stressed out about school and not getting enough sleep because of it.
Regardless, I know that next semester will be better. I actually only need about 12 credits to graduate, although I'll probably end up taking 14 or 15. I don't think that they'll be too hard and I know that I'm going to like them. Even if I am in a better place then, the only guy that I have any modicum of interest in (the one I went on a date with) is probably still going to be in that stressed out state. He's working on his masters and is going to graduate in May. He has to have his thesis done next semester, so I'm not even sure if there is any possibility for us. It might just not work because of all of the stuff that he'll have to be doing.
*Just a note here: I actually was going to make this post more about sex and how I think I'm repressing that part of myself. Somehow it turned into my thoughts on dating. Not sure how that happened.
Ah, the gay penguins
are creating controversy yet again (and I'm procrastinating yet again). Some parents are complaing that the book about the gay penuins at the New York City Zoo is in the kids section.
They feel that:
the book tackles topics their young children aren't ready to handle.
Their request: Move the book to the library's regular shelves and restrict it to a section for mature issues, perhaps even requiring parental permission before their child can check it out.
My question is, are their kids really not ready to handle this or are the parents not ready to handle the thought that their kids might be able to handle it just fine?
Ah, blogging - the ultimate procrastinator enabler. I'm addicted to procrastinating and like a misguided relative providing excuses for their alcoholic spouse, blogger (and xanga and myspace) is always there with an excuse for me to not do what I'm supposed to be doing. Right now I should be working on a paper that's due tomorrow, or reading the book that I haven't finished that the paper is supposed to be on, or studying for a quiz, or doing homework but instead I am here. I know I was going to write about dating on a Christian campus while being an atheist, but I haven't gotten to it yet. A few days ago I nearly made myself throw up because I was cramming food down my throat as fast as possible because I had spent all of my lunch time in the library and I had to get back to work. So, since then I've been trying to moderate myself a little and I've tried to cut down on things that have been taking up my time and keeping me from doing the schoolwork that I need to be doing. Since finals and all the end of semester papers are coming up I may not be posting here for a while. I have read some of the blogs of people who've commented here. Many of them look interesting and maybe over Christmas break I can comment on a few of them and read into them a little deeper. I hope you guys keep reading despite my long absences. Have a good weekend everyone.
Changing colleges, etc
I'm still getting comments on that post that's 2 down from this one. I'm so amazed. I've never had that many comments on anything I've posted, either here or on the 3 or 4 other blogs that I've had in the past couple of years. I once got about 8 comments on a post that I made about chastity belts and I got another 8 comments when I posted this exchange: Female Friend: I'm really horny. How should I deal with this?
Me: My current strategy is one of denial and repression.
Male Friend: Ha! You call me when that falls apart. I'll be happy to help you out with it.
I guess all I have to do to get people reading and commenting is to really write about what I feel, which is something I rarely do. I am, however, planning on doing this more often here. I don't always feel comfortable posting certain things where all of my friends can read them. As none of them know about this blog, I'm planning on taking advantage of that.
Thanks to the people who commented with suggestions and everything. I followed some of the links and read a couple of articles. When I get a free moment, which probably won't happen tll Christmas break or so, I'm going to spend a little more time actually following through on some of the suggestions. Thank you to the commenter who suggested a Unitarian church. I've actually considered checking it out. Unfortunately, this requires motivation to get out of bed before 1pm on a Sunday. I also haven't had much time to look into whether there are any close to where I am. I think that there's one within a half an hours drive or so. Someday I'll check it out.
As for transferring, it's not that it's bad advice or anything, just that in my particular situation it would really do me any good. I'm going to graduate in May and I wouldn't want to have to study any longer to get a degree, which is what would happen if I were to attend somewhere else. I've already been here for over four years. It'll be a total of 5 by the time I've graduated and I'm ready to be done with school for a while. I do plan to go to law school, but I really am going to need some time with a job next year. Also, while there have been certain negative things about attending here, I really do think that it was the right choice for me to have made. I don't regret it at all. If I had gone somewhere else, I know that I still would consider myself an atheist. The difference is that I would always wonder if I had gone to a Christian college if things would have been different. I would wonder if I would have been able to muster up some good Christian faith and actions and saved myself and my family the grief of being at such odds with each other. I suffer from enough self doubt and I know that I don't want that. I know for sure now that there really is no way for me to be a Christian. I am the way I am and nothing could change that. You have no idea how much confidence that gives me. I need that feeling and I wouldn't trade it for anything, including being at a secular college where I am accepted. I'll get out in to secular society soon enough. Yes, I'm looking forward to it. But that doesn't mean that things are awful right now. I'm actually content with my life - which believe me is a first. Sure there are things I'd like to change. Some days are worse than others. Some days are better. Actually, come to think of it, I've gone several days without hearing a mention of God. Wow, the super religious people are slipping. How did they manage to let me get away with that?
Anyway, my life has stress. Sometimes that comes from being in a religious environment. Sometimes it doesn't. For the moment the stress is coming from tons of schoolwork, insomnia, and back pain, which I'm pretty sure is caused by carrying around about 35 pounds of books 3 days a week.
I am going to post more this weekend (I promise). One things I want to talk about is how hard it is to date on a campus where most people will only date another Christian.
Sadly, I have to go study for a test. Yes, at 2 o'clock in the morning. The insomnia is hitting me hard tonight. If I honestly thought I could go to sleep, I would forego the studying for the sleep.
Wow, that was a lot of comments I got on that last post. I guess all I need to do is leave a few comments of my own on blogs that have a lot of readers. Anyway, thanks for the comments. I enjoyed reading them. I'd address them in the comment section, but I think it's more likely that it'll be read here. David, yes it sounds like we do have a lot of similar experiences. I actually am going to email you. Michael K, yes it was a very honest post. I'm glad that I have this blog. It's kind of like my diary. I've never been able to consistantly keep up a journal or diary for all kinds of reasons, so that's kind of why I have this blog. Writing about it here is my own therapy. It's refreshing for me to be able to write honestly. Like I said in my last post, I'm always afraid of doing that here. Anonymous, thanks especially for the quote from Steven Hawking. He's someone I really admire and that statement actually really represents what I believe. I don't believe that there could be an all powerful being because that would go against the laws of the universe. I think that anything out there has to conform to those laws, which in my mind makes that being not a "God" in the way that most people think of the nature of God. To another anonymous poster, it is a real college, if that's what you mean. Sure plenty of parents send their kids here because there are more rules that most colleges, but it is still a very academic institution. Many people go on to graduate schools from here. To another anonymous poster, I will check out that yahoo group. I'm not quite sure that my background qualifies as "fundamentalist." My parents are pretty conservative in their religious beliefs but they don't really fit in with people who are maniacal about their beliefs. They hardly ever even vote Republican so how fundy could they be? Anyway, I think I would still fit in pretty well in the group. I did grow up going to churches and places where sex before marriage and drinking alcohol were considered sins. Chris Williams, I think you're probably right. This issue has been weighing on my mind more and more and I don't think I can take it too much longer. It's not like I lie about stuff; I just avoid the subject. If someone directly asks I tell them the truth, but it's hard for me. But I do think that the sooner I actually start telling the truth and stop being afraid of it, the better I will feel. Now I just have to work up the courage to do so. Lisa, yes, people wanting to convert me is an issue that I do face. But as one other commenter said, the people who really matter won't act that way. I know that I have true friends who care about me as a friend, not as someone to be fixed. I know that all of my friends already know that I don't go to church. As for changing colleges, I'm going to graduate in May, so that's not really one of my options. If I were miserable I would have transfered a long time ago. But I'm really not miserable. I'm happy that I came here and I think I've gained things from being here. I don't regret making the decision to come here. I think at this point I am honest with myself. I've been honest about myself to several of my friends. None of them has tried to convert or change me, but that may just be because I chose carefully who I would tell and didn't tell the people who might react that way.
Anyway, thanks again for the comments. I didn't address them all, but I did appreciate them all. I have to go now. I have a slight cold and need to get some sleep. I'm planning on posting here again soon. I'll probably do it a lot more often if people keep reading and commenting. Good night.