Thursday, July 17, 2014

Need Some Space? You Might Get More Than You Bargained For

If you go online and search, "I need some space," you'll see some truly bleak relationship diagnoses.  What does it really mean? 

Honestly, I think it depends on the person saying it.  If you've been casually dating for two weeks and your Other pulls out the space card, perhaps you shouldn't get too invested.  If you've been married for almost three years and together for a year prior to that...well, clearly I'm not enough of a relationship expert to know whether or not that means your Other wants to break up, has some new piece taking your place, but doesn't want to say the words and hurt you, and so is trying to create distance in the relationship to make the break cleaner, or if your Other needs to think about things and do some self-analysis.

What I can tell you is that as a female who has tried very hard to avoid emotional pain in life, to the point of refusing to date only one person at a time until Mr. Right touched me and made me feel the feeling I thought was a bunch of hokey you only get in romance novels, the whole space thing may be a deal breaker.

When a relationship is in danger of ending, and Other wants space, all I see is Other ending things, and the breakup grief begins.  There's self-blame with bargaining and sadness, a whole bunch of anger, and if the "space" of Other pushing me away goes on too long, eventually, I just become numb to the whole thing.  The opposite of love isn't hate, because that is an equally strong emotion.  The opposite of love is indifference, and the scary part of "I want some space," is wondering whether or not I'll be able to get through the grieving with enough love intact if Other does decide to try to make things work.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Unrealistic Step-ectations

I read an article today that was posted a few years ago about relating to stepchildren from the point of view of a stepmother.  Here is the link, if you want to check it out.  However, I think it's a bunch of hooey, and contains some of the worst advice I've seen in a long time.

The author starts the article by assuming several bits of information.  The first very important assumption is that all stepchildren are legally children.  This is far from correct.  You may be marrying into a much bigger mess than you accounted for if you are taking on stepchildren who are already teenagers, and sadly, sometimes when you are taking on adult stepchildren.  Guilt is a powerful motivator, and when children learn they can push Daddy with guilt, suddenly that manipulative 20 year old may as well be 6 years old with two missing front teeth, wearing a tutu and ballet shoes.

The author's advice to stay positive is all well and good, but I would strongly recommend a stiff dose of reality.  If you are dating a man with manipulative children, and you think it will get better after the marriage, you're wrong.  Thinking positive will be your enemy when you look back at the last seven years of hell and second divorce your stepchildren made your life, and you wish you could give your younger-yet-more-ignorant self a taste of the reality you've lived with, when you know you wouldn't make that choice again.  If you're still willing to ride it out after looking at the reality and accepting it exactly as it comes, you must really love him, and I really hope that you can make it work.  Not everyone can.

Back to that ridiculous article.  The author goes on to tell you to put yourself second.  This is terrible advice that will end with you bowing to the ever-growing list of demands your selfish stepchild places upon you. 

If I could give one piece of advice it would be this:  make sure the child or children's mother will enforce respect and shared discipline, and make sure your new husband isn't operating solely out of guilt for leaving a relationship he wasn't happy in.  Those two things are the key to success for any step parent.  If your decisions are respected and upheld in the home, and all parents are working together as a discipline team, you'll be successful.  If not, you'll end up with kids who don't respect anyone's authority, including whoever thought it was a good idea to tell that kid that he or she didn't have to respect the other parenting team.  FAIL.  Successful people respect their authority:  parents, police, bosses.  People who don't respect authority end up unemployed and in jail.

The next mistake is forgiving and forgetting.  Forgive, but do not forget, because stepmothers who forget end up having their jewelry stolen twice instead of once, their cars wrecked twice instead of once, and their husbands just keep feeling that guilty need to choose them over you.  Twice.

Five - Unconditional love my ass.  As I've said before, you meet a pain in the ass child at the mall who is screaming at its mom, you don't automatically love that child.  You can't.  You think it's a pain in the ass.  You can learn to love his kids, but it's really hard to learn to love someone who is hateful all the time.  Trying to waste your energy on loving people like that unconditionally will just make you feel like a failure.  Instead, understand that you had no part in the initial raising of that child, do you best to accept that the child or children for exactly what and who they are, and treat him/her/them fairly.  Sometimes, love is a luxury you just don't get to give.  Sometimes, it's hard to even like them, and that's when you should take a walk and think a bit about this being your life until he/she/they is/are 18.  Or 20.  Or whenever Dad forces a move-out or move-on.  Number six in that article is spot on.  You aren't their mom.  You can't take mom's place, you may not be able to love them unconditionally, but you can do your best, and try to learn to love them every day.  That's called building a real relationship instead of relying on unrealistic ideals.

I confess that I 100% agree with number 7 and mostly with number 8 (unless it's to your best friend, and you desperately need advice, or just a little venting to stay sane and you know it's absolutely private), and always about number 9 (getting a counselor).  Don't badmouth their biological mother in front of them, or in your bedroom where they might hear, or in a text message they might sneakily read, even if you think you can get away with it.  This also goes for their father, even if you are fighting.  If they say mean things about either one, respond with one of my favorites, "Well, you know he/she is only human, just like the rest of us, and nobody is perfect, but he/she loves you and does the best he/she can for you, etc." I find that one particularly successful, personally.

I'd love to say that your marital problems aren't the fault of your stepkids, but we know the statistics.  How many second marriages fail, and how many of those are because of children from prior relationships?  Just remember that you chose to stay, and it's always your choice to continue to stay and put up with this stuff.  I also don't believe you should attend all school functions, especially when older children have made it clear that you aren't welcome.  Don't put yourself in a position to be attacked emotionally, because it is likely that Dad will just remind you that you weren't invited, and will not support you if the child is unpleasant.

As for number 15, spot on.  Not only should you not expect the kids to like you, expect them to actively dislike you, at least until you die, and then they can say sad things about how much they always liked you to their father, when they don't have to follow up.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Auntie Firestar Can Tell You 15 Reasons He or She Isn't Right For You

In poking around the internet, I found a host of articles about how to know a man isn't right for you.  It's funny that there aren't nearly as many articles about how she isn't right for you, or at all geared towards people with poly inclinations, or who are trans or homosexual, or any number of "not the norm" sexual proclivities.  Obviously, some of the signs that "normal" articles point to as reasons that a relationship won't work are going to be spot on for anyone.  However, there are some of those that I'm going to pick on a little, too.  I'll even alphabetize them for you, and try for sub-groupings.  I hope that I have compiled the most comprehensive list possible.  I figure with all of my years of "how not to date" experience, I should be an expert by now.  Hopefully by the end of this, you will be too, and without my terrible memories as proof.  Hey, we live in the real world.  It doesn't pay to live with blinders over our eyes.  Here we go.

Note - since I am not addressing a specific gender, rather than have to switch constantly between the singular "he" and "she," I will mostly address your intended or significant other as "Other," to save time and my headache.

Addiction - If you or Other struggle with an addiction to drugs, alcohol, gambling, whatever, you or Other need to spend the time working on self, rather than trying to be part of a unit.  No one can be a healthy partner in a healthy relationship when one has a monkey on one's back.  Don't fall into the trap of trying to save this person.  The only person you can save is yourself.  Anyone who wants help has to make that decision alone, and does not need to drag anyone else along.

Arguing - both excessive arguing to the point where there is little harmony or peace in the relationship may be a sign that both parties are lawyers, or that there isn't enough common ground.  Just so, avoidance of all conflict may be a sign that one or Other is being too compliant, and not expressing true feelings.  This goes along with the incompatibility entry a bit later.

Change - You trying to change Other, Other trying to change you (this includes attempts to get you to lose weight, dress differently, etc.).  Additionally, if you find Other's habits so extremely annoying that you feel the need to nag, or vice versa, you may be attracted to the potential you see in this person rather than the person you are getting, or this person may be attracted to one aspect of you, and try to change the rest.  When you love someone, you have to accept them exactly as they are, and they need to afford you the same consideration, warts and all.  If either of you can't live with that, you should move on.

Cheating - Since this covers all different types of relationships, I want to be very clear that if someone breaks the rules in a poly relationship, that is still cheating.  There are some people who find the thought of cheating exciting, either being cheated on or doing the sneaking around.  If you are with an Other like this, and you don't have and don't want the type of relationship that allows for this person to fulfill their sexual cheating needs, then you need to run as fast as your legs can carry you.  An Other like this will only bring you heartbreak.  As a reminder, cheating doesn't have to be physical.  Being disrespectful enough of you to take up your scheduled time with your Other to set up dates or have intimate conversations with others is a sign that perhaps this Other isn't mature enough yet to handle multiple partners.  If the Other you are seeing is already taken and not clearly poly or in an open relationship - and - out to the other relationships in Other's life, this is not worth your time.  Seek more honest and forthright pastures, since without communication, NO type of relationship is going to work properly.

Dishonesty - This also includes lack of candor and lack of trust,which go for both parties.  Relationships cannot thrive without honesty.  I'm not talking about needing to tell your Other what you had for breakfast that morning or you're the problem, but if you don't feel you can share the big events that have happened in your life because you don't trust this person enough, perhaps you should rethink whether or not you want to share your body with this person.  Obviously, if you catch this person lying to you, that's an immediate strike out.

Disrespect - This includes quite a bit of stuff.  Public ridicule of either party to either party is a sign that the relationship has gone downhill - fast.  When Other doesn't want to introduce you to friends, or for you to spend time with Other's friends, this may be a sign that Other is not proud of you, and you deserve a partner who is proud to have you on his or her arm!  When Other downplays your relationship when introducing you to people, that is another sign that perhaps you are not being shown the respect you deserve.  Also in this category are:  not paying attention when you speak, speaking poorly of you to others (though this may be slow to reach your ears), and not speaking up when others are disrespectful to you in Other's presence.

Emotional unavailability - When you have an Other who will not comfort you when you are sad or otherwise distraught, and you need to use friends or family to fill the emotional vacuum created by this lack, you might consider examining whether or not this is a relationship or if you simply fill needs for your Other.  You may also notice your emotionally unavailable Other filling sexual needs with you and then dismissing you, or allowing you to shoulder financial burdens for activities rather than attempting to share them with you.

"Fear of Commitment" - This may be you, or it may be a claim that Other has made.  Either way, it is a glaring, neon red sign to get out now if you want a real, healthy relationship.  You cannot, and I cannot stress this enough, you CANNOT fix this person.  If this is you, forget relationships for a while, and explore this with a counselor or at the very least, a trusted, introspective friend with lots of extra psych classes from college.

Gut feeling - Straight up, just listen to yourself.  Your subconscious notices things your conscious self may not be aware of yet, like something that could lead to emotional abuse or physical abuse later, or a whole host of other issues.  If you feel like this Other is a bit off, chances are, you shouldn't give extra chances, because your best friend will likely be in for a good, old fashioned round of, "I told you so," a bit down the road.  Some additional feelings may include being unable to imagine this person as a good parent, if you are looking to settle down and breed; your friends intensely disliking this Other; etc.

Incompatible - There are several areas of incompatibility that are important to address.  I'd like to start with sexual incompatibility.  I'm talking about libidos.  If you have a drastically different preference in frequency of sexual activity with Other, this isn't going to get better.  This is going to slowly fragment your relationship over years.  If you don't believe me, go check out every advice columnist ever (especially Dan Savage over at The Stranger) and all of their letters about how a wife or husband of 20 years doesn't want to have sex.  Trust me when I say that being the higher libidoed person in a relationship is killer on the psyche, and ends up drowning you in insecurities about why you're constantly being turned down.  End it now before you breed together and have this fight once a week until the divorce papers are drawn up.  Incompatibility can also include lack of attraction by either party (this can loop around to the "change" issue, such as when someone likes your personality, but wants you to lose weight to be worthy of attention, etc.), finding Other boring or unintelligent, or vice versa, lack of common ground, feeling as if you can't be yourself around Other, and dissimilar end goals, such as when you want kids but Other hates kids, or you want marriage and Other doesn't believe in it.  This doesn't go away.  You don't fix those fundamental desires in a partner, you move on to someone who wants what you want. 

Investment level - This is another issue of incompatibility, but this is when Other doesn't ever call first, avoids you, or is too busy to make time for you.  You may be a booty call or a friend with benefits, and Other may not realize you are investing the majority of the effort thinking this is a  more serious relationship.  This is the kind of issue where a clarification conversation may be needed to DTR, and should that not roll out as you hoped, you may need to invest your energy in a relationship that is going where you want to head.

Locked in the closet - There are all kinds of closets we hide in.  This may be a person hiding in the straight closet who is bi or just not straight, or someone who screams about wanting monogamy while every action tells a different truth.  It isn't your job to crowbar this Other out of the closet that Other is clinging to.  If you want to wait until this Other is ready to calmly exit the closet and be honest, not just with you, but with Other's self, there may be a chance at that point, but you deserve more than to sit around and wait for someone that may never decide to accept one's self.  In this case, I would advise moving on, with the possibility of lending a compassionate ear in the future, but not ruining future prospects over it.

Personal emotional issues - I'm talking to you now.  If you maintain a relationship because you don't want to be alone, or are scared of potential rejection on the singles field, you need to find yourself a counselor (or trusted friend, blah, blah) and work through that shit.  Being codependent will not get you anywhere you want to go in life.  Be whole, assertive, and emotionally healthy, if at all possible.  Then, and only then, start hitting up your local comicon in search of a smokin' hot Other.

Poor communication skills - This can be an either / or.  Shallow conversations with your Other, where you never really learn anything about each other are not a great foundation for a relationship.  You also want to make sure that if you have an open or poly relationship that you have your guidelines clearly set, because without that, feelings are bound to get hurt.  It takes a great deal of honesty and emotional maturity to successfully maintain long-term open and poly relationships, and while people can have the relationships without those things, remember that honesty is always easier than lying, because then you don't have to remember the shit you made up.

Selfishness - This can display as an unwillingness to sacrifice, a refusal to make time for events you care about, or a general assumption that things are owed to Other, and that you need not be appreciated for the things you do.  No one wants a selfish partner, because that's not a relationship.  That's a monologue with a stagehand.

Wandering eyes - This one seemed to be a popular reason to leave an Other, which is just sad, but makes me laugh a little every time I see someone complain about this.  Seriously?  Don't throw a relationship out the window for this, unless it has progressed to be an attempt to change you, or to make you feel bad about yourself.  Let's be honest.  When you stop looking, you're dead.  If we're talking just boy-girl, ladies, get over it.  Guys, she's as bad as you are.  Feel free to point that out the next time your non-comic-book-reading girl gladly goes to see Thor or Captain America with you.  You know why she went.  Of course, if she's smart, it's to check out Scarlett Johansson's ass, because that's a piece of eye candy that everyone should find hot, regardless of orientation. 

Monday, June 23, 2014


What is the truth, and can it exist in a relationship between two people?  When you have one person who is determined to live life with absolute honesty, and one person who can't seem to do that, because honesty with others can only come after honesty with self, is it even possible?

I have made a deliberate and difficult decision not to poke into emails or read text messages in the middle of the night.  It isn't as though I couldn't, but I choose not to, for multiple reasons.  The first reason is that I want the honesty to come from discussion, not discovery.  If you catch someone doing something, and they are forced to be truthful, is that really honesty, or just cover up?  The more important of my reasons is that I'm not sure I really want the unvarnished truth.

I had it once.  By accident.  On our first anniversary.  It was my own fault for poking where I shouldn't have, really.  I was playing some game on my phone, and when it died, I switched phones.  A text message came in, and being the curious sort, I read the rest in that string, only to discover plans to leave me.

Of course I was told that those plans weren't true, and that the messages were lies of the type we tell to comfort children, but I never really gave all of my trust back after that moment, seeing that lying came as easily as truth, and still not being entirely sure who was the one who was being lied to.

After another year and a half passed, a torn relationship was darned, though not completely mended, with that comforted child.  I cannot bring myself to read the messages that pass between them.  I fear that anything I read will be the end of things for us.  I'm sure things have been said and deleted that I wouldn't approve of, secrets about me or us that I would rather keep.  I just don't know if I really want to know.  Would I even be told if I decided I did?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Truth About Stepchildren

You can read story after story in the Grimm's Fairy Tales book, and find horrible things that stepmothers have done to their children.  If you want gruesome, The Juniper Tree is definitely the way to go.  I find it ironic that if you type in "manipulative step-daughter" as a search into google, you'll find story after story of the horrible things that men and their step-children have done to women who did nothing worse than try to fall in love with a man who already had children from another relationship, and try to treat those children as their own, with love and consideration.  Children of today have such a sense of entitlement, that it makes me want to slap their smug, arrogant little smirks off, as they demand respect they haven't earned, or equal treatment with step-siblings by not having to do any chores.

I had step-daughters, once.  I don't acknowledge their existence anymore.  If I had my way, The Juniper Tree would be more than just a fairy tale.  They were horrid.  Before I married their father, they would send me hateful text messages while I was trying to work, and told their father that if he loved them, he would leave me because he deserved to be miserable for leaving town to find work AND HE AGREED WITH THEM.  It really should have been a warning of what was to come, but I was naive enough that I believed they could come to at least like me, if not love me.

Alas, it was not to be.  Any affection they gave was in an effort to twist my honest words into something hateful to report to their mother about how bad their father's house was.  Despite the fact that this woman let her 16 year old daughter have extended sleepovers at her boyfriend's house, we were the "bad" ones for not allowing her to do whatever or whoever the fuck she wanted whenever she wanted.  When she stayed over and wanted to leave for her boyfriend's, when we said, "No," it didn't matter.  She would just leave and go back to her mother's house so she could do it.  Her mother's response when we told her we had a problem with the overnight visits was, "She's on birth control." OH, well that makes everything better.  No one ever gets pregnant and fails out of high school when they take the pill.  No one ever gets an STD or socially ostracized for being "easy" in a town where everyone knows everyone's business when they act that way.

It occurred to me, tragically, and logically, that there is no evolutionary reason I should like your kids.  There is no evolutionary reason I should love your kids, just because I love you.  They didn't come out of my body.  I in no way contributed to their upbringing, since the youngest was 13 when I met her.  I don't automatically love the asshole children of random strangers who act like spoiled brats at the mall, whining about wanting everything they see, and how things aren't 'fair.'  As a matter of fact, I can say with some authority, that if it didn't come out of my body, I definitely don't automatically like it.  I don't automatically like my nieces and nephews either, and I bet most people can't stand that one spoiled kid in the family that belongs to a sibling or cousin.  As someone who interacts with kids pretty regularly, I can get to know them, and like them, but love takes longer, and it sure as hell isn't automatic.  Expecting a woman to love her step-children when I haven't seen many who actually try to build relationships with their step-mothers (yes, I am blaming asshole children, and the custodial parents who allow them to behave that way - if they came home and got in serious shit for being dicks to their step-moms,  it would stop at the snap of a pair of fingers) makes me wonder who is sniffing the paint, and how much they got for society as a whole to have that ludicrous viewpoint.

Wake up, people!  A child isn't off the hook for behaving horribly because a divorce happened and he/she didn't have a choice.  That kid is choosing to be a dick to an authority figure, and it's being allowed by someone.  You think if you teach your kids they can rebel against authority that it won't bite you in the ass later?  Ha!  It is up to bio mom and bio dad to ensure that they protect the step-moms and step-dads from being emotionally abused by kids who want to lash out at someone because of a divorce.  If your second marriage crashes and burns faster than the first one, you only have yourself to blame for not disciplining your kids - and you'll see those results when they come to you asking for bail money five to ten years from now, mark my words.

Mark my words.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Let Me Make Myself Explicitly Clear

I want to make a few things really clear.  Explicitly clear.  There are some things I have run across lately that really push my buttons.

I believe in the right to bear arms, and I believe in the death penalty.  If you look at the laws on the books, gun laws are there to protect law-abiding citizens, and I believe if you take their guns away, criminals, who already don't abide by gun laws, will hold the innocent hostage.  As for the death penalty, I have been in a position to know what some of the worst of society have done, in great detail.  There are pictures in my head of the horrible evils that humans do to other humans, and animals that I wouldn't want to share with others.  If you disagree, feel free to read case files of men on Death Row, who have committed serial offenses that make the guy from Se7en look like the Easter Bunny.  The people who commit these atrocities get put in prison, and put to death, and that makes me feel safer at night.  You don't have to agree with me.  I'm not holding the needle or forcing the justice system to do anything that it isn't already set up to do.

I believe being gay is in the DNA, not a choice.  If you disagree, feel free to read scientific articles here, here, here or to do your own research.  I'm not open to discussion on this.

I believe in equal rights for everyone, and that means all religions, people of all rainbow colors, and people of any/all sexual orientations or lifestyle choices.  I do not believe this gives any member of any of the above-mentioned groups the right to discriminate against others who don't believe the way he or she does.  This includes all business owners.  If you operate a business for profit, your job is to serve the public, not to promote your religion, your religious dogma, or any other bigoted beliefs.  If you want to use your religion to choose who you will serve, open a church so that everyone sees your true colors, instead of pretending to be a capitalist.

I vote primarily with Libertarians, because they are economically conservative, and generally socially liberal.  If you are socially conservative and want to convert me, keep on walking.  If you want to talk about how Libertarians and the Tea Party are the same thing,  you need to read your party platforms.  You also need to understand that once the Tea Party adopted the socially conservative stances they have, they also removed themselves from the few areas where they actually agreed with Libertarians.  Don't bother spending your day telling me that the Tea Party is really a Libertarian group when they are socially conservative.  For more information, read a recent article here, or watch a video here.

I'm not interested in believing God is about anything but love.  Don't bother telling me that gay people shouldn't get married or have the right to raise children together.  Your religion doesn't get to dictate your twisted version of right and wrong to me.  Don't bother telling me that it's okay to let gay people have civil unions, but that it's okay to treat them differently and not allow them to call themselves married because marriage is a religious institution.  Frankly, it hasn't been a solely religious institution for a long time, and if you're being honest with yourself, you would admit that, instead of fighting the inevitable change and progress our society is making.

I realize there are some areas where you may disagree.  You don't have to read or agree with articles I post on my facebook or on my blog.  I post them because I find them interesting, helpful, or of particular concern.  You are welcome to disagree, but keep it to yourself.  Don't post argumentative comments all fucking day, not even addressing the issue at hand, and expect me to come around to your way of thinking.  As far as I'm concerned, if you don't believe in love and equality, you're wrong.

You're not going to convince me that a loving God is a bigot.  This website has framed an educated response to the hatred and hypocrisy of the Christian church in today's time.  (And you wonder why they have such terrible reputations!)  My response in advance to those who disagree with my "loving God" hypothesis is to tell you to go read the original Dead Sea Scrolls, and translate them from the original language before you presume to quote scripture as a source for hatred.  Good luck figuring out which word translates to "homosexual," because I guarantee you that you won't find it.  If you don't have time for that, someone has done just that here.  Then, while you're at it, go read the books that the council left out of the Bible.  You can even get an e-book copy from Amazon or Barnes and Noble, for your reading convenience.  I guarantee you won't look at Jesus the same way afterwards.

While you're at it, take a closer look at heaven with Dr. Eben Alexander in his book, Proof of Heaven, which does not espouse Christianity so much as it provides reassurance of an afterlife.

After you've done the research and opened your eyes to what is really out there, maybe we can talk, or maybe you'll still be a stubborn asshole.  I don't know, but I do know it isn't my job to fix  stupid people.  I can only hope they either learn from their stupidity or just accidentally cut off their own testicles in an event worthy of a Darwin Award so they can't breed and make more.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Getting to Know Me

Hi.  I'm Firestar.  Smith.  Okay, okay, I know that the whole "Smith" thing is a little cliche, but this is the internet.  If I can't be anonymous online, where can I be anonymous?  I figured that since my first name is so common, I could keep that.  I'm pretty sure it was on the top ten most commonly used baby names a few years back, like Jennifer, and Alice, so I went with "Smith" in order to protect myself.  I live in New York and major in Art History.  I have a fiance, and I'm bisexual.  I don't really talk about it much, because I don't feel like it defines me.  It's so much more important to talk about what I do for a living, or whether or not I'm a good person.  The fact that I find both females and males attractive is hardly my defining aspect, and frankly, I'm insulted by people who think that is the thing that is sending me to hell.  For starters, there are plenty of other reasons.  That one little detail is so far down the list, it may as well not even be there.

Let's take it from the top.

1.  I don't believe Jesus is the son of God.  Sure, sure, I'll give you that he existed.  I'll also agree that he said a lot of great things about loving each other, and not being a judgmental dick.  However, my years of religious education unfortunately included lovely chunks of material about Jesus' teen years.  You know, that stuff that was conveniently removed from being "canonical" because some dead guys sitting around a table thought it might make the whole Bible a bit less convincing.  They were right, though.  It sure convinced me of Jesus' being Son of Man instead of Son of God.

So that's definitely #1 for most people, which is why I keep that little gem to myself, also.  It doesn't hurt that I'm so jaded about the way religions run their churches like money sinks, trying to suck up the dollars, but not actually paying their staff...  'nother issue.  Sorry.

2.  I'm closer to a Deist than anything else, but they don't have a church.  Of course, that means fewer imperfect human beings to screw it up, so that's actually a good thing.  I read too much in college about the Golden Ratio to not believe in a higher power, so Deist is the closest I'm getting.  

3.  I'm not actually a very nice person.  I'll give $5 to the homeless Veteran and his dog, but if I could institute controlled breeding right this second to Darwin out the stupid people, I'd do it without a second thought.  In fact, I would put birth control in the chocolate and make people pass psychological exams in order to have children, then if they were caught breeding without a license, and without being able to pass the exams, I would take the children away and give them to people who could pass but weren't able to conceive.  The offenders would then be sterilized.

So yeah.  I'm not nice.  I'm actually kind of a bitch.  Feel free to write me in for president for the next election.

4.  I don't believe men deserve to have names until they earn them.  When I was dating, my roommate and I refused to call each others' boyfriends by their names until they were around long enough that it was worth it.  Guys, this goes for the current round of college girls that just want to tap and run, too.  They don't deserve a name until they stick around long enough without being douchie.  In fact, I had one guy that my roommate refused to call by name for three full years.  Instead, she called him Paper Boy.  For three years.  Turns out that I should have taken that as a sign...

5.  I tried being a lesbian for a while, but it turns out that I think chicks are way too high maintenance. I don't have time for some girl asking me where I've been, when I'll be home, or if I'll buy her something.  Bitch, please.

6.  I'm bisexual.  It's fairly far down here, and honestly, not my defining characteristic.  I think the whole being a bitch thing is much more defining. 

So this is me.  Firestar.  "Smith." It's nice to meet you.  Hopefully, you enjoy my inner monologue which has somehow escaped, and has become somewhat external.  Heaven knows it's scary in my brain, but hopefully this will be as therapeutic for you as it is for me..