• Kink and the Kitty

Relationship Goals

Updated: Jan 8

Through my blurry, stained-glass eyes the clock reads 4:05 AM, and I'm alone. I attempt to convince myself that space is everything I want. I roll over and spread out in the middle of the bed. He delivered what I desired, but even with the plush, velvet duvet wrapped around me, all I feel is cold. I find my phone to play the song that always rips my heart wide open and I sob.

I know I'm not on my own when I say it's been a tough year. The waves of unfortunate events keep rolling in, one after another, before the current can even pry the last one away. They crash over my head, and I struggle to breathe. Slimy, green tentacles reach up and bind my legs, pulling me into the darkness. It's easy to believe that our character can withstand the sea monsters. We hope that when life is turbulent, we'll live in integrity, honesty, and compassion. Survival is paramount, and in our furious attempts to hack away the arms that are pulling us deeper, we damage ourselves and the ones we love. We grasp at anything or anyone that offers refuge regardless of the detrimental consequences.

It all started in the spring. We were on a rolling high, and the world felt like it was ours for the taking. We were madly in love, work was worthwhile, and we were wildly enjoying our sexual escapades. But my family is a complicated one. It's broken and small, and deep down I cling to the belief we all love each other. This spring my siblings, parents, and in-laws were all acting from a place of indifference. They were unwilling to accept any fault of their own, pointing fingers at each other and demolishing relationships in the name of being right. As one event bled into the next, I found myself becoming numb.

Though painful, the real grit came the day my mom went into the hospital, and Rob's dad entered home hospice. A few days later, his father passed away.

Over the next month, my mom was in and out of the hospital five times. Combined with the pain and events surrounding Rob's father's death, I was on empty. My brothers weren't helping, and my partner was falling apart. And the cherry on top? A few days before his father's funeral, Rob lost his job. It was the perfect storm. His childhood insecurities and fear of failure met head-on with my resentment and sincere desire to isolate. He needed a partner, and I wanted to claw my way into a hole of solitude. When I wasn't there for him, she was.

In an open relationship, it can be hard to know where the line of what's ok and what is not ok lives, but honesty is still required. It started innocently enough with a few sexy pictures and conversations that lead to months of online sexual indulgence. We always played together, and while they never physically partook, it was the first time it was never about us and was never going to be. Rob lied to cover up lies, afraid in his truth he'd find rejection. It was their dirty, little secret, and I was deep in the dark.

It's hard to say who was to blame. All I knew was that I was livid, and it was the perfect reason for me to burn it all to the ground. As a survivor, I look for deception. I nearly felt righteous in my discoveries of dishonesty, and I wore my pain like a badge of honor. My subconscious secretly expects people to let me down. I was seething in his betrayal. And, like my family, I couldn't accept that I held any responsibility. I wouldn't choose to leave, and I couldn't say I wanted to stay. A part of me ached for him to hurt too, unconscious of how much he already was. After a month of living with my anger and feeling isolated, he broke down. No choice is still a choice, and his was to give me the space I asked for until I could decide what I wanted to do.

I quietly watched him clench his blanket and disappear into the darkness, banishing himself to the couch. I'm sure the fear of the unknown was almost too intense for him to bear. There was courage in his uncertainty. I slept alone that night with swollen eyes and tear-stained cheeks, trying to enjoy the empty bed I had coveted. I gathered my pride and hiked it straight to the edge of the cliff. I suppose there are times you have to lose it all to comprehend what you have.

I'm not always excellent at being vulnerable. People regularly hashtag our photos #relationshipgoals and I was ashamed that we were secretly submerging. Was it just a shitty season or had the passion silently slipped away? If people knew would we lose our appeal? The reality is there is beauty in our imperfections and power in being exposed.

After weeks of longing for my freedom, I closed the door and committed fully to my relationship, suddenly aware of how free I felt in his love. I've realized there is no shame in our journey. When we achingly unravel ourselves and reveal our trauma, we can begin to heal it. To bare our nastiest parts and say "I love you anyway" is more potent than any facade of perfection and in that, I find my #relationshipgoals.

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Your Kinky Kitty,

Jessica RAVAGE