Unsent Texts to My Father After the Election

Received 11/9/16 6am from Dad: “Donald Trump was a populist candidate who gets it regarding what the original intention of the constitution was… ‘for the people and by the people'”

11/9/16 6:01am. “Not feeling too good about the men in my family who unapologetically support a person who talks about and treats women the way Trump does (not to mention his racism, ableism, Islamophobia, and xenophobia).  I’m wondering how you can justify it to yourself.”

11/9/16 6:30am. “I feel personally sold out by my whole country, but it hurts the most that my own father won’t say, ‘It’s wrong to treat women that way.  I have a daughter and I want the world to be a safe place for her.  I won’t stand for it.’  Why won’t you just say it, Dad?”

11/9/16 8:44am. “This world is not safe for me and has been made even less safe because (slightly less than half) my country said, ‘It’s fine what men do to women. So long as he promises to make me some money.’”

11/9/16  11:13am. “Dad, I was so upset this morning I took an early lunch and watched an episode of In the Middle while crying in my car. It was the episode where the father told his 7th grade daughter that he wasn’t ready for her to go to boy/girl parties. He wanted to protect her for longer. Why did you never try to protect me?”

11/9/16 1:34pm. “Why didn’t you warn me what men were like? Why did you send me out in the world undefended?”

11/9/16 1:37pm. “Really, I want to know. Why didn’t you tell me I deserved better than to be preyed upon?”

11/9/16 5:03 pm.“Why don’t you stand up to men, try to make men better, for my sake? Why do you still not want the world to be safe for me? Why don’t you HEAR me? When I say that men like Trump make this world unsafe for women like me, why don’t you HEAR me?”

11/9/16 5:38 pm. “Or is it that you do hear me, but you don’t care?”

11/9/16 6:00 pm.“It’s occurred to me tonight that whenever I feel ashamed for speaking up for myself or standing up for myself, it’s because I think of you, and what you would think.”

11/9/16 8:14pm. “Hard to believe that at this time last night I still had hope that people were essentially good. All these months, every time you expressed your support for that man, I heard it as, ‘It doesn’t matter to me that there’s a rape culture, and that you were victimized by it.  I’d rather be lead by a sexual predator than listen to a woman in power.  Your safety isn’t as important to me as my entitlement to economic advantage over others.’”

11/9/16 9:30pm. “Your vote says to me,  ‘Being supported in my unconscious racist attitudes is so satisfying to me that I chose that over you.’”

11/9/16 11:43pm.“You wouldn’t know this, because I’ve never told you.  But that night, after it happened,  I went to your house. I sought comfort from you, I sought safety.  I needed love.  But when I got there,  I couldn’t even speak. I was too ashamed. I blamed myself.   I never told you, or anyone else.  For years, I never told.   Today, I understand why.”

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Vigil

This morning I cussed out  a bill collector who has repeatedly called my new number asking for Sean, who evidently owes money on a Ford F150.   The calls come daily, and I usually tolerate them like a pesky flies, swatting at the off button on my phone. Today I was filled with outrage. This person keeps calling my phone against my will—yet another of those aggressive, intrusive people who seeks to control, another man trying to invade my space and my boundaries.

“I don’t know who the fuck this Sean person is,” I told the collector.  “Quit calling my phone, asshole.”

Not two hours later, he called again. Sometimes, it seems,  the world is just full of Donald Trumps.

My therapist suggested I stay off CNN, and NPR, and unplug from the political podcasts.  I have been on a nonstop news vigil since the story broke about Donald Trump’s habit of sexually assaulting women, and  she could see in my face the toll it was taking on me. At this point, she said, I’m just retraumatizing myself.

Yet, I’m finding it impossible to stay away from the stories.   I wondered if maybe I was attracted to the drama of it, the distraction from my own life. But after my uncharacteristic meltdown with that bill collector, it occurred to me that maybe it’s more than that.

I want to see Donald Trump destroyed. I want him ridiculed, humiliated, and abandoned by anyone who ever believed in him.  I’m angry at him and every man who’s ever acted like him.  I want the entire Rape Culture to be told:  It’s over.  And, fuck you.

When the story about the 2005 Trump Tape first broke,  I didn’t imagine that anything would come of it.  I know from personal experience that this is how a lot of men behave, like they have the right to do what they want with a woman’s body; I assumed everyone else already knew this.  I was pleasantly surprised by the outrage.  I could barely sleep, I was so filled with hopeful excitement. The political pundits on CNN predicted a total collapse of Donald Trump’s campaign for president.  “It’s over,” they declared.  “He can’t recover from this.” I couldn’t believe it.  I hadn’t realized that the world had changed, that it was becoming safe place to be a woman.  I hadn’t noticed that happening at all.

I was starting to feel validated.  Government leaders who had supported Trump repudiated his campaign and withdrew their endorsements. The said what had happened to me was wrong and should never have happened.  My country would have no part in condoning such behavior.

And then…well,  nothing really happened.

Donald Trump participated in a debate in which he was said to have “held it together,” and now it seemed this whole mess would blow over.  There was still outrage and calls for Trump to step down, but these voices fell into the background, even as more and more women came forward speaking their truth. I was harmed, they said. This is how I was harmed.

Even louder voices responded back: Well, aren’t you overdramatic (just like a woman to overreact). Shame on you for distracting us from what really matters, from the issues.  This is a world where the men make the rules and we aren’t changing things for your comfort.  You should be ashamed of yourself for even asking.

I heard: It was your fault, anyway.

I heard: And it’s a lie. You aren’t even pretty enough to assault.

Today, I am full of shame.  I feel shame for having gotten my hopes up, shame for having joined the voices of protest.  I’m back in the silly fringe camp, whining and shrill and oversensitive. Once again, I’ve asked for too much, needed too much, and hoped for too much–for far more than I deserve.

And yet I don’t turn off my TV, and I don’t turn off my phone.  I remain at my vigil: watching, hoping, and needing.

 

Father Hunger: The night Donald Trump got me in touch with my Daddy Issues

I never could understand the big deal about fathers. When I worked as a domestic violence counselor, I couldn’t relate to how women agonized over their children not having a daddy anymore.  As a child protective services worker, I couldn’t really empathize with girls in foster care feeling lost without their fathers.  I felt leery and (I’ll admit it) a tad judgmental in the presence of any women who self-identified as a Daddy’s Girl.  I found myself wondering, just what’s the big deal about fathers?  They seemed fairly expendable to me.

Reading this attitude, you’re probably drawing certain conclusions about me.  I must have been traumatized by an abusive or neglectful father, or raised by a competent single mother, or some such family situation.  The truth is, my father is a perfectly decent and kind man.  Growing up, he was a good provider for my family.  He was funny, energetic, and gentle.  He treated my mother well, coached my brothers in their athletics, and could tell a great story. I was the only girl in my family, and I don’t think he knew quite what to do with a daughter, so he left most of my raising  to my mother—but I can’t think of a single time that he deliberately harmed me.  Though I always felt disconnected and vaguely uncomfortable around my Dad, I didn’t think this was a problem to work through.  I was certain that I was free from Daddy Issues.

Last night I was watching news footage of Hurricane Matthew, waiting to see if the hurricane would make a direct hit on land, when the storm coverage was preempted by the story of yet another of Donald Trump’s transgressions. It emerged that he had been recorded making lewd, predatory, and sexually aggressive comments about women, and he admitted to a practice grabbing women by the genitals (presumably, without their consent).

As a survivor of sexual violence, I felt pretty agitated listening to Donald Trump’s admission of acts of sexual assault, and I am disgusted and horrified by his belief that he’s entitled to help himself to the body of any woman he wants. I feel emotionally triggered whenever I’m exposed to any  justification of sexual aggression or perpetration of rape culture.  Listening to this story unfold last night, I found myself in a state of high agitation.

I stayed glued to CNN throughout the night as statements and reactions from politicians and the media rolled in.  I listened with mounting anxiety as prominent men firmly stated they can no longer support Trump because  of his vulgar attitude toward women.

Of course,  I realize that I should have been outraged by the fact that Trump can denigrate disabled people, immigrants, and minorities and still get the support of the Republican leadership, but it’s the disrespect of white women that finally makes him unfit to be President.  And I am (outraged).  Also, my inner feminist should have bristled at  the “women are precious” rhetoric, at the idea that women are objects to be revered on a pedestal, that women are only valuable because of their relation to men as wives and daughters.  And I did (bristle).

But.  Yes, but:  Tears welled up in my eyes as I listened to Jeb Bush’s statement that “as the grandfather of two precious girls, I find that no apology can excuse away Donald Trump’s reprehensible comments degrading women.”  And again when Mitt Romney said, “Such vile degradations demean our wives and daughters and corrupt America’s face to the world.” I listened as men called into the media outlets to say that they can’t let their daughters think they condone such behavior by supporting Trump. They think of their daughters, and how they love them, and are sickened by this man’s words.

Out of absolutely nowhere, I found myself falling into a deep, yawning pit of painful need. I sat in my apartment weeping three decades worth of tears. I realized I was desperate for a father. I needed my Dad to call up Fox News (his favorite station) and say he will not vote for Trump because he cannot condone such behavior toward women. “I think of my daughter, and I love her and respect her,” he would say, an edge of sadness in his words (he really, really liked the idea of Trump). “And I will never stand by someone speaking of my daughter this way.”

Before last night, I had been entirely unaware of my yearning for a father. Now, my Daddy Issues had made unexpected landfall.  It was a direct hit.

Wave after wave of pain washed over me through the night.  I thought about how growing up as a female in a mostly male household, I never felt a sense of integrity, or healthy pride, or true worth. How I always felt less than, both because I wasn’t a male,  and because I was not the right kind of female. How growing into womanhood, I felt like a failure in my father’s eyes.  I realized that I had a belief that all my father valued about women was their sex appeal.  As an asexual woman, I wanted absolutely no part of sex appeal.  This left me deeply questioning my worth.

I need to repeat here that my father is a perfectly wonderful man.  There is no specific reason for my belief that he views women as sexual objects—other than the fact that our culture views women as sexual objects and my father has never resisted this. He has never defended me against the culture. He has never told me I am worth more than my body, that I have more value than as a sexual object for a man. He never told me that I deserve to be respected.  Possibly most importantly, he never told me that I had a no, or a right for my no to mean no.

I needed someone in my life to tell me this.

And I need my father to say:

Mr. Trump, I will not tolerate you speaking of women this way.  Because my daughter is a woman, and she is strong and capable and intelligent and powerful.  I love her, and  I want the world to be a safe place for her.

And I need my father to say:

My daughter, you didn’t deserve any of that.  I would have protected you, had I known.  I’m sorry it happened to you.  If I’d known,  I promise I would have helped you.  

 

 

 

Hey Trump, this is my notice of NO.

Even more than I want jobs, I want my body, my dignity, and my personhood to be respected. Even more than I want secure borders, I want the security of knowing my body’s boundaries won’t be violated by people thinking they have the right to it. Even more than I want peaceful and effective foreign policy, I want relief from the domestic terrorism perpetrated against women by American rape culture. These concerns are not a distraction.  These concerns ARE the issues.

 

Primary Need

 

It turns out I never did have Sexual Aversion Disorder or Hypoactive Arousal Disorder or Frigid Selfish Wife Personality Disorder. Yet, after I learned that asexuality existed as an orientation, not a mental or physically illness, I was still left with an uncomfortable truth: Asexuality may not be the cause of it, but I’m broken all the same.

There is no single reason I can point to and say, Right there is the cause. That is why I feel so lonely and incapable of developing intimate relationships. There are the suspected culprits:  mismatched needs and temperaments between myself and my parents, childhood abuse by a baby-sitter, the caustic culture of the ballet world where I spent my youth.

There’s also my asexuality.

No, I’m not suggesting asexuality is wrong, or disordered, or in any way a flaw.  But, the fact that I am asexual and grew up in such an amatonormative and heteronormative culture that I didn’t even know asexuality existed—these realities of my existence deeply harmed me. As a result of lack of awareness about asexuality, my response to my asexuality was, well, disordered, and contributed to the core of emptiness that later led to clinical depression, a raging eating disorder, and an inability to sustain intimate relationships.

I recently spent my 38th birthday alone. I received the obligatory Happy Birthdays from the three coworkers in my small office, plus some birthday wish texts from my family.  After work, I went to a coffee shop to write for a little while, and then I went to bed early.  This might have been my preferred way to spend an evening, had I not been acutely aware that I was supposed to be surrounded by loved ones letting me know how glad they are that I was born. I’ve never been one to make a big celebration of my birthday, but I have to admit I felt panicked fear rising.  There’s no one in my life for whom my birth and my presence in their life is primary. And I need this.

I’ve been reflecting on the relationships of my childhood and teen years, trying to pin down when I lost my ability to connect with others.   As a child, I felt curious about people, interested in getting to know them, comfortable showing myself to others and letting them know me (never all of me, even then, but certainly more than I allow today).  I had best friends, primary relationships with other girls my own age that were intimate and mutually caring.

At some point in my teens, I became aware of a shift.  It seemed that everyone (but me) was moving away from friendships to meet their intimacy needs and into primary romantic dating relationships.  I truly couldn’t understand why people wanted such a thing, why anyone needed anything but a good friend to love.  I didn’t hear the call that everyone else did, but I saw what I was supposed to be doing.  I saw that there were romantic relationships that were now the Reason for Living and the Most Important Thing. I saw that Falling in Love was taking my friends away from me, rendering me less important, secondary.

These dating relationships were driven by sex, another thing I couldn’t understand.  I watched with growing unease as all the females I knew caught this bug in which they felt the need to be close to boys (and some, to girls), to touch them, to put their mouths on them.  Inwardly, I withdrew from the very idea with horror and revulsion: You want to put what, where?

I was terrified that I would never develop the mandatory desire for a boyfriend, that I would be exposed as flawed, as wrong in an essential and deeply shameful way.  I had no language to understand what was different about me, since the words available (straight, gay, or bisexual) didn’t fit, and I didn’t know there had ever been another soul on earth that felt the way I did. I decided no one could ever know my secret.

Even more frightening was what I did want.  I wanted what everyone else did: love, loyalty, commitment, and intimacy.  I wanted mutual caring and interdependence.  I wanted to love deeply and with abandonment of self. I wanted to be seen, truly seen—and loved anyway. Yet, I had absorbed from my culture the message that this type of love was reserved exclusively for primary romantic partnerships, that the only way to gain access to real love was through sexual intimacy.

I also heard that my wanting intimacy from a relationship that wasn’t sexual was deeply inappropriate. It was needing too much. And from my family, I had absorbed the message that needing too much was just about the worst thing a person could do.

Since I was a young child, my response to unmet need has been shame, followed closely by a willful denial that I need anything at all. As I was finishing up high school and moving on to college,  I threw away and destroyed any relationships that I still had, acting out of unconscious fear that was buried so deep I couldn’t possibly have named it. It was a time of underground panic, of violent earthquakes deep in my psyche. A time of cracking foundations, disrupted growth, frantic clawing for safety.  At the surface, I found purchase in (what felt like the security of) disorder and obsession.

None of this came above ground for me until I was in my late thirties and learned about asexuality.  First I discovered the word, then I discovered the community.  It wasn’t until I found community that I felt safe enough to really hear the truth about my asexuality—I couldn’t come home until I had hope there was a home for me.

I’ve recently begun attending a monthly asexual meet up in my area.  We’re a small group for such a large city, but I’m grateful to meet, in the flesh, four or five other people who are like me in this fundamental way.  We don’t talk much about asexuality when we get together.  We talk about what everyone else talks about—current events, viral Youtube videos, our neighbors with all the cats.

I don’t feel connected yet.  Simply meeting other asexual people doesn’t instantly fix years of dysfunction and confusion.  Coming home doesn’t mean I’m not terrified of what’s in the basement, spooked by the shadows on the walls.  But for the first time, I feel more hope than despair.

It’s not just freedom from the fear that I’ll find myself in that horrifying position of realizing (too late) that the person I’ve been talking to has been flirting with me. It’s not just that when I’m with other asexuals, I can settle into the security of knowing that they are not heading toward that path that is closed off for me. Being with other asexuals gives me the soul soothing knowledge that I am among people who have the same needs I do, needs for love and intimacy and connection, and that they too are seeking to meet these needs outside of the normative path.* It’s possible that here, I won’t be left behind, that I will find people to see and to love. That I can allow myself to be seen—truly seen—and loved anyway.

 

*Not all asexuals choose to refrain from sexual and/or romantic relationships, of course.

Attachment without Attraction: Help for the Wounded Asexual?

I’ve made significant improvements to my life in the years since the height of my eating disorder. I no longer have wildly inappropriate rages at random strangers. I no longer sleep in cars or move apartments every two months because I can’t pay the rent. It’s been years since I’ve shoplifted wine from a grocery store or walked out on a job or given myself a sponge bath in a gas station bathroom–achievements made possible by hard work in therapy and a couple of 12 Step programs.

And yet, I still find myself completely stumped by the process of forming meaningful relationships with other human beings.  I struggle with a pervasive and constant feeling of inadequacy, an inability to feel truly connected in the world.  All my life, I’ve dealt with emptiness, deep loneliness, a painful sense of unworthiness.  I want, more than anything, to love and be loved—but I can’t figure out how it’s done.

A person watching me flounder in my relationships might think, “Someone must have done a number on her when she was young.  That woman is wounded.”  Like the wounded, I don’t trust. I hide and dodge and don’t ever let others really see me.  And yet, there’s no real explanation for it, beyond the (maybe slightly higher than average) childhood scars we all carry into adulthood.  There’s no explanation for why my wounds have not yet healed, why I am still so impaired in my relationships, while others with comparable traumas have learned how to connect.

At my job, I work with recovering addicts in a court mandated drug treatment program.   My clients come into the program fresh from the county jail, and I watch them start over again after having shattered their lives to pieces. They struggle with unemployment, homelessness, lack of transportation, child custody issues, poor health, and all the other problems life throws at addicts. I can see the impaired thinking, anxiety, and emotional reactivity so clearly as I watch them in their early recovery. I feel for them, remembering those days myself.

It never stops being a shock when, despite their condition, they fall in love.  Which they always do, ignoring warnings to avoid romantic relationships in early recovery.  They get out of jail, get their jobs at the chicken processing plant, and within months fall in love with their new boyfriend or girlfriend. Every time it happens, I am just amazed.

Not to brag, and at the risk of sounding terribly unprofessional, but I am proud that I am not as sick as my clients (anymore).  I had quite a head start over them on this recovery stuff.  Most of the time, I probably pass as a reasonably well-adjusted adult. And yet, I marvel that people in early recovery are capable of experiencing love and connection and safety, while I still can’t, even after years and years of therapeutic intervention.

It can make a person feel pretty hopeless, if you want to know the truth.

If people sick with the same disease I have can connect with others in ways that I can’t,  I wonder what helps them do it. Upon closer observation, I notice that many of my clients have the same distant and unsatisfying relationships with family and acquantances as I do.  The difference is that they do find a way to meet their connection needs through intimate relationships with romantic partners.  Today, this leads me to wonder how much asexuality plays a role in my relationship difficulties.

Is it possible that sexual attraction serves as a sort of accessibility aid,  a powerful force that helps to glue people to others when they might otherwise be incapable of attachment?  In my observation,  it seems that people find a way to love another person who has the means of meeting their sexual needs.  This sexual attraction stuff looks awfully powerful–possibly powerful enough to overcome the fears and barriers that keep people locked in loneliness.

I no longer wish to experience sexual attraction, but I do long for an attachment aid of my own.  Is there another force available to me that can help me learn to connect with other people, despite my fear?  It would need to be something as powerful as sexual attraction, a force strong enough to dismantle my walls—or at least, strong enough to give me the courage to do it myself.

 

A Blue Bikini Girl

This week I’m on vacation with my family in Daytona Beach. We have stayed on this same stretch of the Atlantic every year since I was a baby. The Sun Glow Pier has been my edge of the vacation world all these years—always, my family settles in north of it. “Don’t go past the Pier,” my grandmother said when I was a child running along the shore with my brothers. “Stay where I can see you.” The folks in our family are (and always have been) north-of-the-pier type of people.

Every morning, I walk on the beach—one mile south, turning around at the Pier. As I pass along the same sands where my feet have made prints for the past thirty-seven years, I reflect on my past, drawing my memories in close. While I do that, I check out women’s butts.

In my anorexic days, I spent my vacations examining every female I came across, always asking, Is she thinner than me? Is she better? In those days I blamed my discomfort in a bathing suit on the size of my body. Even at some forty pounds underweight, I felt too large and flabby to be seen in a bathing suit. I’ve been wearing shorts (or more recently, a skirt) to cover my butt since I was about ten years old.

My weight has gone up (way up) and down in the years since my anorexia, and I’ve still never been comfortable in a bathing suit. But for the first time this year, it hit me that it might not be entirely about my weight. I’ve come to realize that my discomfort might instead be because of sex.

This morning on my walk I saw a teenage girl playing Frisbee with a man I presumed to be her father. She wore a blue bikini, the kind currently in fashion that has, for some reason, a pleated seam along the butt crack. I was in awe–not because the girl looked like a model in her swimsuit (she did), but because she was wearing this skimpy bikini in front of her father.
Blue Bikini Girl ran after a Frisbee, breasts bouncing around in her top. When the disk skidded into the water, she bent over to pick it up, laughing, ass in the air in plain sight of her Dad. She scooped up the Frisbee and hurled it at her father. And, inconceivably, she didn’t pick the wedgie that resulted from her athletics. She just stood there with one butt cheek peeking out, laughing, waiting for the return toss.

It was the most incredible thing I’ve ever witnessed.

When I was twelve years old, my father accidently saw me naked. I was bent over a laundry basket in my bedroom, digging around for some clean underwear, and he walked into my room without knocking.

“Oh!” he cried in horror. “I’m so sorry.” He closed the door and left and never spoke to me again.

Okay, that was hyperbole. I’m sure he spoke to me that night at dinner. But still—-I do sort of trace back the loss of my father (or, more precisely, the loss of comfort around my father) to some time around that day, when he or I or both of us realized I was becoming a woman, or would be soon enough.

In the years that I was still trying to fix my “sex problem,” I would bring up this memory to my therapist, as well as other memories about being uncomfortable around my father. Sexually uncomfortable, it felt like.

“Has he ever been inappropriate with you?” she’d ask.

“God no,” I’d say, horrified.

No, never a lewd comment. Never a violated boundary (he always knocked on my door after that day I mooned him). He never looked at me as a sexual person at all, in fact. Never once did he ask me about my boyfriends, or suggest that he might protect me from them—-things my friends’ dads did, to their horror and annoyance.

For many years, my discomfort with my body in a bathing suit was about what it wasn’t, not so much was it was. I never developed breasts beyond an A cup. As an anorexic, I was flat as a boy, but even when I gained, I didn’t gain there. My hips were broad and wide, but not curvy. I never got a soft, perky, squishy butt like Blue Bikini Girl. I was ashamed of my body—both for its excesses, and for what it failed to be. I was not like the bouncy, sexy women that I saw my father’s eyes follow on the beach.

And maybe the scariest and most shameful part of all was that I didn’t want to be. I didn’t want anyone to be attracted to me, ever. Because I wasn’t attracted to anyone else, ever.

My father is a very sexual person. He loves my mother, and with both of them now in their sixties, he still talks about how sexy he finds her. He makes thinly veiled sexual comments to her (“I’ve got your tool” was a favorite for years) and she giggles and pretends to slap him away.

Growing up, I had the typical adolescent’s horror over the idea of my parents having sex. My brothers and I shared this revulsion. There are four of us, evidence that my parents had sex together four times, which is, of course, repulsive. We would put our hands over our ears and shout “la la la la la” to drown out our Dad any time he mentioned “alone time” with our mother. When I was thirteen, my parents announced they were pregnant with another child. One of my brothers stormed out of Applebee’s shouting, “You people are disgusting.”

The problem was, I never stopped thinking that sex was disgusting. Long after the other kids started becoming attracted to other people, I continued to look at sex between any people as just as gross as sex between my parents. And the idea of sex between myself and another person was even worse.

Now, in no way am I suggesting that my asexuality is somehow a lack of development, that I am stuck in a pre-adolescent “sex is gross” phase. This is not the case at all, though for years I wished it was. I wished my asexuality was fixable. Rather, I’m telling this story to try to understand why at age thirty-seven I still can’t be comfortable around my father in a bathing suit.

I think it’s this. Because I don’t experience sexual attraction, I can’t truly understand it. I don’t understand where it comes from, what causes it, what triggers it, what it feels like. Because of this, I find sex very threatening, even when it doesn’t involve me. Part of the fear is that I don’t understand how to make sure it doesn’t involve me. In my experience, sex always seems to pop out of nowhere, unprovoked and definitely unwanted, sort of like having a cock roach crawl up your arm in the dark.
Today on my walk I realized I have a belief that everyone travels around in a state of constant and indiscriminant attraction to nearly everyone else. So I can’t truly understand that Dad on the beach, playing Frisbee with Blue Bikini Girl, is not a total pervert lusting after his daughter (probably). Odds are good that he’s not attracted to her, even if she has the exact qualities of a woman he might otherwise be attracted to (bouncing breasts, perky ass wedgie). And in all probability, my father wouldn’t have the hots for me, either, if he saw me in a bikini.
Having realized this today, I vowed that one of these days, I will feel safe enough to take my shorts off at the beach. After I get to the perfect weight, of course.