I don’t know if anyone will read this within a day, a week, or even a year of its posting, but I suspect that’s not the point. It doesn’t matter if it ever gets read. What matters is that I write it.
Those who know me personally probably already know that I am taking medication for migraines. Most of those also know that the medication I was prescribed is an anti-depressant, this specific variation of which is sometimes used for its side effect of reducing the frequency and severity of chronic pain. A few will be aware that this might be a good thing for me beyond handling the headaches, since I’ve shown several of the symptoms of depression off and on for many years.
Well, now I’m out, and can’t afford to get any more. The medication itself isn’t particularly pricey, but the office visit to renew the refills is.
Now, before anyone pulls out the wallet and heads to PayPal or whatever, I’m not looking for help with this. I just want to discuss a few things with myself, as it were. Get my head back on straight.
See, the pills were beginning to lose effectiveness on the headaches, but they were actually doing wonders (apparently) on my depression-like symptoms. (I’m trying to avoid self-diagnosis so as to not marginalize those who actually for-certain have depression. Unless/until someone with the training to know says I have something, it’s only symptoms.)
At least, since the meds started effectively leaving my system, my mood has been less predictable and more negative.
I’ll spare anyone reading this the full details of my symptoms, but it does bring up a few other items I feel are important enough to put out there, even though they are of little importance otherwise. These are facets of my life that I start to fixate on whenever my mood turns this direction, and if I can get the discussion on them out of my own head, it may do me some good.
First, my belief system. It’s both very simple and very complicated, all at once. The simple part: I believe that the sheer force of belief itself shapes reality. It certainly shapes our actions, at least, and I don’t know many rational people who would argue that our actions have no effect on reality. Then there is the effect of shared beliefs on how objective reality is perceived, and thus explained and explored. Whether this cascade effect continues to the level espoused by spiritualism and religion is ultimately beyond the point that those beliefs shape the actions of those who hold them, which in turn shapes the world we share with them. That in itself is often enough.
The complexity, if that isn’t obvious already, comes from how those myriad beliefs interact, and how to determine which beliefs are most true at any given moment. I tend toward treating them all as equally effective, since I don’t have sufficient data to know for sure in any case.
Second is a personal understanding of my own nature which, frankly, can only be interpreted as insanity given current knowledge and understanding of various scientific principles. Probably schizophrenia, or one of its relatives. I feel strongly about its truth, but my certainty doesn’t help in my attempt to defend myself. I’ll leave this one at that.
Last is a facet of myself that isn’t widely known (mostly because it doesn’t really matter in the vast majority of situations), but which shapes my own thoughts and actions, sometimes in ways that make others uncomfortable. This bit will probably make many people even more uncomfortable around me than they already normally are, but I think it’s beyond time I say it.
I am a practicing bisexual.
What does that mean? It means that I love my wife, and we are as intimate as our bodies will allow. But it also means that I am attracted to men just as much, and enjoy such intimacy with them as well. This is not a surprise to my wife, who is wonderful beyond what I could possibly deserve. We discussed the matter long ago, and decided that the main issue with extramarital intimacy wasn’t the sex itself, but rather the damage of trust. So long as neither of us tries to hide a sexual relationship from the other, if it happens, it happens.
Now, this doesn’t mean we’re out sleeping around. I won’t speak on her sex life (aside from the one she has with me) because that’s her story to tell or not as she pleases. For my part, however, I don’t tend to find myself in situations where I could take advantage of this arrangement anyway. That said, I have had a few exhausting nights with a member of my own sex. And I enjoyed every minute just as much as I do the ones I share with my wife. So, no, I’m not just “bicurious”. I know I like playing both sides of the field.
That was as non-graphic as I could make it while still being clear about that bit of myself. I suspect some – if not most – of the people reading this (assuming, again, that anyone will) will place as much distance between me and themselves as they can manage. Hell, it’s even still legal for me to lose my job(s) over it. (Well, not so much legal as not illegal, but in practice, they’re about the same…) I accept that as something I cannot change. But I feel the need to have it said is far more important than maintaining friendships or employment where this aspect of me justifies such reactions. Indeed, if this is enough to end these relationships I’ve built even while being this person I’ve now admitted to being, then those relationships probably weren’t worth the time to cultivate in the first place.
I hope, though, that the relationships I have with others are strengthened by this knowledge, if they are affected at all. That would be the best scenario for everyone, I believe. It would certainly do a lot for my faith in people in general.
We will see, I am sure.
With all that written down, I am indeed feeling more sure of myself, as hoped, and could probably store this away someplace where it would never be read by anyone other than myself. That wouldn’t be particularly honest of me, though. Not after what I’ve written here. So here you go, world. I accept whatever damage this will do to my career(s), my friendships, and even my family, as I take full responsibility for it.
And who knows. Maybe my fears are misplaced.