Friday, May 7, 2010

Intimacy Issues (mine)

I don't like it when men use my bathroom. They can use Velvet's bathroom all they want, but not mine. Women can use my bathroom, and even dig through the drawers for supplies if necessary. The floor plan of my apartment clearly designates my bathroom as the guest bathroom since it's in the hall. Years ago I moved Velvet into the master bedroom, so his bathroom is not for casual guests like people at miscellaneous pot lucks and parties. Or Buzz Kill, of course, but Buzz Kill apparently doesn't know that since he seems to use my bathroom every time he's over here. I've never told him it bothers me, though, so he must not know what I'm thinking. He can't read my mind. People can only know what you're thinking if you tell them.

It may be that one of the things I'm supposed to learn from The Preacher is how to communicate my thoughts and feelings like normal humans. When I'm discussing society, Jesus or politics, I don't have a problem sharing my thoughts and feelings. Naturally I am as respectful as I can possibly be even when I'm not exactly sober. However, if I have to communicate something of a personal nature, I typically choke on it and spazz. The feeling whirls around in my consciousness as if it were in a rotor ride at the county fair. One of those rides that spins around until the bottom drops out.


I actually like the spinning part, and at first I like it when the bottom drops out and the force of the spinning keeps you safely stuck to the wall. It's like that on other rides, too. Fun at first but then it goes on a bit too long and you just want off. The need to get off the carnival ride is pretty much how I need to feel before I am propelled to say something about my feelings. When it's clear that the only way anything will be different is for me to say something, then I will take a deep breath and say it. The trouble then becomes communicating in a way that doesn't disturb the peace.

In my classroom full of very young children, I frequently tell kids that they can say anything they need to say without being rude. You simply have to choose words that don't hurt anybody else's feelings. Of course, other people can be tricky because they get touchy and offended sometimes for reasons no one will ever understand. The Preacher isn't like that, however. He takes things in stride.

The Preacher has hung out with a bunch of families in the hospital - and with people who are fixing to die. Emotions run high in those situations so you can stumble into many poorly executed conversations. Who uses my bathroom is not a life or death matter, but it's still a big deal to me since it involves my personal space. I don't like it when Velvet's male friends use my bathroom either especially since they often dribble when they pee.

Although the Preacher shows no signs of dribbling when he pees, but I'm still having issues around personal space. I suspect that intimacy has something to do with it. I'm not prepared for intimacy on that level at the moment, and I have to remember that it's okay. In fact, it's more than okay. It's my assertive right, and I don't have to spazz about it.

Now that I've spent a couple of days with The Preacher, I'm beginning to see that I don't have to spazz about anything. He's a respectful sort of fellow and a very good listener, but that's one of the qualities I first noticed about him. He's not the sort of person who listens to me with half an ear while he's thinking of what he's going to say next. He cares about the answers.

I will say, however, that he manages to bring the dang Bible or Jesus Himself into almost any conversation. I keep reminding him that there are other books and that one day, somebody might go through Harry Potter and number all the passages. People number the lines in Shakespeare's plays, and King Arthur makes a pretty good story too. But even the best stories can wear a person out, after a while.

There's no denying that the Bible has had an impact on society - but like everything else humans have created, The Bible is a human construct. The Preacher isn't all literal about the Bible or he'd have never gotten through the front door of Menopausal Stoners World Headquarters. Nevertheless, there are other books and stories in this world. Again, one would hope a Preacher loved reading the Bible and that he could find endless ways of applying it to our daily lives - and I respect that he's excited about the Bible and Jesus and stuff.

I don't know, though, maybe we all retreat into our personal enthusiasms when faced with daunting challenges, and he is finding me a challenge. I seem to have developed a team of invisible body guards surrounding me.

For myself, I believe the body guards are a good thing - for the time being anyway. I like the idea of having a real friend much more than the idea of another member of Triciaholics Anonymous hanging around. A few years ago, when I was actively computer dating after my divorce, a man told me he was going to have to join a chapter of Triciaholics Anonymous. It was a clever, all together flattering line - but it didn't get him into my pants especially since I suspected one of the reasons he was so slick was because he was married even though he declared he was fully separated. Lots of fully separated folks stay married their entire lives.

The Preacher is not a bit slick. He's thoughtful and kind. Patient, too. He would probably say that's on account of Jesus, but I believe he was like that long before he got started reading the Bible in the original Greek.




11 comments:

Beach Bum said...

I don't like it when men use my bathroom.

To be honest, I hate using the bathroom in other people's homes. While for me I transfer the feelings I have about how guests at my house can be disgusting pigs messing up everything so I am reluctant to do the same in their homes.

Except one time while visiting some friends of my wife's up in Washington DC. Seeing the near empty roll of toliet paper I had to ask where another roll was before I did my business. The wife of the house yelled back to look under the sink. Which was cool until I opened the cabinet and found really freaky sex toys.

I mean this stuff was way beyond what a simple redneck from the country was use to or knew about. But I found the new roll and just kept quiet about the other things.

PENolan said...

I can see why you kept quiet at the time. You never know where kinky sex toys will show up.

Typically, I'm a very good hostess and don't mind a little mess at all. It's a bit unnerving when someone you never met in real life is suddenly in your personal space, however. Now that he's safely in The Guest Room (aka Velvet's room), I've been able to relax somewhat.

Gail said...

HI TRISH-

I hear ya on the bathroom issue - SKipp and I, 20 years later - prefer separate bathrooms - I lean towards the down stairs bathroom, he, the one upstairs. And I despise when kids use either bathroom - they are SO messy. :-)

True story - a friend was dating a new girl and was going to her parents for diner - first time. After dinner he had to go to the bathroom - #2. SO he did, and when he went to flush the toilet did not work. He was SO embarrassed he jumped out the window and never went back. :-)

Now about the bibe-Jesus struff - I agree, he was a nice guy long before he knew Jesus or read the Bible.

I also like your body guards in place. The can 'stand down' when the time is right.

Love you
Gail
peace

and

'HAPPY MNOTHER'S DAY"

Vancouver Voyeur said...

I also use the downstairs guest bathroom, so does every guest, teenager, and band member that comes into our home. My biggest pet peeve, besides the dribbling, is leaving the damn toilet seat up. I have a very sensitive nose and I have left signs to put the seat down when finished. I have personally asked people to put the seat down. One of these days I might explode with choice curse words, like, "if I wanted to smell your shit, piss (whatever) I would go stick my head in the bowl! Put the friggin' seat down dammit!"

Anonymous said...

I have been married to same farmer, for 31 years, I work full time, and then work again for him. we have 3 bathrooms, one, for the daughter, one he is soposto use, when coming in&out all day long. covered with mud, grass, compost, which is his to use, and clean, if we have company, it's generally the daughters company, they use her bathroom, the Large bathroom is mine, the farmer has taken to use it during the night. it is carpeted all around that room, and he dribbles or his aim is not very good. Seat is always left up, and never flushes, wastes water or so am told. The man is doing his best to make me completely crazy. So as am overly tolerant person. Just clean up after him. As a result of living with a farmer who is always tracking dropping, carting something in the house that should be in a barn. Decided a long time ago, that dust was my friend, and unless my mother is coming, that is the way it is unless I get tired of looking at it. Its nice to hear that the man is a good listner, my farmer is forgetting, to whom he has told what, story, event, etc. to and swears he tells me and instead he has either told his help, or cousin, or somebody besides me. And has taken to getting upset with me when I have to correct him. And he is forgetting things I tell him as well. Not sure if it's just plain tired, or something else. Something else runs in his family and its pretty scary.
Hope you have a Happy Mothers Day.
Pat from NY

dissed said...

When someone finally numbers Harry Potter, I want to know about it. Potterism is the coming thing. Besides that, I do like a clean bathroom, and the toilet paper must always roll from the front. Always. If it doesn't, I'll reverse it while I'm sitting there. Really, it's no trouble at all.

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Mauigirl said...

I can understand about your not wanting men to use your bathroom. Heck, I'm not crazy about anybody using my bathroom besides me and my husband! I'm always trying to remember if I left out any embarassing personal items on the vanity or something.

The Preacher sounds like a good guy - and you're right, his innate goodness was probably there before he learned about Jesus!

Teeluck said...

I always make sure I'm neat in the bathroom...mine or someone elses, but I have to admit that the most enjoyable place for me to take a leak is behind a tree or in the bushes. You can guess I love the outdoors.

PENolan said...

Teeluck - you've hit upon the basis for penis envy.
Pat, hang in there with that farmer. Must be nice out in your neighborhood.
V.V. - you need to make that sign in cross stitch ;)

dissed, I do that with the toilet paper too

Gail - I have seen that when the body guards stand down, the spirit guards stand up. Apparently I can only deal with one kind of intimacy at a time, and even then I remain hesitant. If it's one thing I've learned, though, it's that I can trust my instincts and my process.

Jaliya said...

Don't get me started on the dribble thing. Geez, what we freak over, eh? --> I adore my husband. I also want to scream over one teeny little drop of pee on the *top* of the toilet lid (which he always puts down, bless him). I guess it's that last micro-drop that always gets missed ... but like birdshit on a car, that last micro-drop *always* lands on the lid ... and guess who always wipes it away ... ARGH! ;-D

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