Editor’s Note: This week’s sex-and-relationships guest-post comes from Christina Louise Dietrich, whom we’ve featured a couple of times now. You can read more of her writing at her own blog. — Amanda
By Christina Louise Dietrich
It’s a terrifying thing to consider: acquainting myself with an energy I don’t even remember possessing (before it was twisted by my father) and then reclaiming it as Me and mine. An energy that was my divine birthright, now manifested in a persona I call the Cronechild who, in her wisdom, wants so desperately to come out and play. It’s terrifying because it’s leading me to integrate my shame around things like sex and motherhood and status and identity. And power.
After a lifetime of giving her away from a position of powerlessness, convincing her other people’s desires were paramount, telling her she didn’t matter, and compressing her into a space so small and dark that she’d never see the light — I’m now beckoning her to come forward. I’m beseeching her to emerge and tell me, at long last, what she literally almost died to keep secret: what my bodily temple desires most in the world.
How I want to be touched and where. How I prefer a long slow building of energy based on what’s actually happening in my body, as opposed to imagining a fantasy about someone else’s experience and attempting to make it mine Right Fucking Now. How I require safety and an actual connection to really feel safe.
Now that I’m beginning to receive these messages attentively and compassionately, listening to her with an open heart, I realize that to some extent I’ve been able to hear her my whole life. I’d just never trusted what she had to say. I’d never before believed that I could ask for what I wanted and have anyone give it to me because what I wanted required trust and safety and a long, slow build. In a world where sex is often meted out rashly and aggressively on a whim, projected against a pornographic background of desensitized disconnection.
Trust, safety, slow…these are not sexy words according to my programming. And so, I have never believed myself to be sexy.
But the tides are turning and there’s a new Director of Messaging. Lucky for me, the person occupying that role is my husband: a man so beautiful, sensitive, courageous, and insightful that I sometimes think he’s imaginary. Because here is someone who wants to hear what Cronechild has to say and is willing to let her speak in her own time, which he ensures by guaranteeing my safety and building trust. By listening to me and going slowly.
Because he respects and honors me as a person, as a woman, as a sexual creature. Something that he has been able to do only because I did it first. Seven years ago I started the journey that has led me to this place where I actually believe I am worthy of respect, pleasure, and attention. That I don’t have to earn it by offering you my body like a piece of meat or staying small.
Seven years to really start unraveling 38 years of programming based on 5,000 years of women being sexual property.
I’m so grateful to be here with him, listening to her. Because reclamation is no small thing.
- I Thought it Was Just Me (But It Isn’t): Making the Journey from “What Will People Think” to “I am Enough” by Brené Brown
- Slow Sex: The Art and Craft of the Female Orgasm by Nicole Daedone
- Sacred Pleasure: Sex, Myth, and the Politics of the Body – New Paths to Power by Riane Eisler
Christina Louise Dietrich, a technical writer by trade, says of herself: “I write because I am claiming the voice my family and my society tried to silence, the voice that was my divine birthright. I am a woman, a mother, a feminist, a wife. I am compassionate, judgmental, loving, a bully, empathetic, obstinate, caring, rigid, and creative. I’m passionate about systems, beauty, process, experience, trees, interconnections, transitions, logistics, balance, and clarity. I manifest the Amazon, the Androgyne, and the Mother-to-be-Crone.”