My Journey of Body Acceptance.

I’ve been trying to put words to this for a long time, at least a year, and honestly I’ve started and stopped more than any other writing I’ve ever done. I’ve been treading a line between trying to get my point across and not sounding whiney or judgemental, and because this topic is something you don’t hear about a lot, it’s been difficult, so I ask you to read on with an open mind.

There are a lot of things I was never taught about being a man as I grew up and matured. As a child I was raised by parents who were older than most, both chronologically, and mentally. My parents are Legit straight out of a 1950’s sitcom, innocent, judgemental and very strict. They use passive aggressive language and are constantly worried about “what others will think of us”. I was never close with my father. Even now as I am nearing my 40’s he still has no idea how to talk to me, and I am constantly compared to other men my age he associates with.

Which leads me to a recurring issue in my life – Body positivity.

Ever since I hit puberty I’ve been a big guy, I stopped growing at 5’9 and in high school I was a chubby 200lbs, where I stayed well into my mid 20’s. I didn’t do many sports other than martial arts, which was solely because I needed to stop getting beaten up. I was constantly compared to athletes and rich/popular kids, with the question: “don’t you want to be more like ‘so-and-so’?”. I grew up with undeveloped social skills and Poor nutrition, not from lack of money, but from food being used as “love”.

As I got older I started going to the gym after a health scare and managed to drop from 270 lbs to about 180, and then I contracted Bell’s Palsy and fell back into depression, and comfort food.

About this time, my girl and I made the choice to open our relationship up, So I did what I always do when something new happens in my life, I asked the advice of people I trusted who had knowledge of Poly and open relationships.

I talked to about 6 couples, people I trusted, and people I considered friends, and except for 1 pair, basically the advice I was given was “Well, the first thing and most important thing you need to do is lose some weight or no one will want you, if that’s not something you want to do, just be happy you have one person in your life that wants to touch your penis.”

Now, I have always struggled with Body image and self confidence because of my weight since the first time I asked out a girl and she laughed in my face and slapped me in front of half my graduating class. To say I was Crushed would be an understatement.

I’ve always Looked at my naked body with scorn and distaste, I fell into the trap of needing to look like a hollywood beefcake in order to attract partners, However I will say that I do understand some partners find my body type attractive, I love my girl, and she finds me sexy, and all of the other adjectives associated with it. At the time of our first date, I had no idea this would be the case though.

I digress.

Over the years I have been “trained” to expect rejection based on a multitude of things, from my body hair, to my weight, to my hobbies and interests. Because of this I always thought if I could just find that one insatiable slut (slut being used as a positive) that would just be forward enough with me I would end up becoming a completely different person. Self assured, confident, All of the things I perceive as problems would just change.

Let me tell you I was wrong.

When we opened our relationship, on top of the previously mentioned “advice”, I also read voraciously, and I think most would agree, in poly/open/swinging relationships a man definitely has a much harder time finding perspective partners, much more so in my case, as I had never successfully asked anyone out. Let me tell you, I got scared, Really scared, I thought I would lose my girl, who I love as much as I love breathing. My body image issues were what I pinned all my insecurities on, I again thought – if I could just get a 6 pack, or bigger biceps it would some how mask my lack of self confidence, or make up for (what I perceived as) sexual shortcomings.

I got Mad.

Anyone that tells you rage and spite aren’t great motivators hasn’t met me. I made a choice to get back in the gym, I caved and grew out my beard, and started working towards my “Perfect Physique”.

The rage and spite came from my own brain, and imagined perceptions, I thought my girl would find someone younger, more physically fit, bigger cock, better dressed, and I needed to worry about a female presenting partner providing things I had no chance of. On top of that I knew my social anxiety and body image issues would prevent me from approaching Attractive humans from a potential partner standpoint, so if I caught someones eye physically I hoped they would approach me, and I could not have to worry about initiating contact.

DO NOT DO THIS.

There are two Quotes that hold some value here before I continue that I would like to share:

“Always be happy, never be satisfied” – A vanilla friend

“Discipline always trumps motivation. Motivation is about emotion and too many times, we rely on emotion to raise our performance. Unfortunately, this can quickly wear you down and if you aren’t motivated, lead to lackluster or missed training sessions. Discipline doesn’t care how you feel, what the weather is or if you’ve had a bad day. Discipline will carry the strong. Discipline will drive success. Discipline doesn’t need a “hype” video or loud music.” – Jim Wendler.

Both of these Quotes are in the context of powerlifting/training, however I find a lot of that advice is relevant to much more.

If I wanted real, lasting change, I needed to be happy with my body – but not satisfied, because of that I needed long term discipline to effect real change. My motivation was exactly what I have detailed in the monolith that is this writing, but in order to be disciplined I needed a real tangible goal, (and honestly a less destructive and shallow one).

So that is where I am currently, I am learning to be happy with my body, and work on my long term aesthetic goals – I have managed to narrow it down. A six pack for me isn’t a realistic goal, I like burgers and scotch too much, I am not a nice person when I buckle down to eat/live like I would have to to achieve that. Instead My goal is to get a “Muscle Bear” look, and be physically strong enough to manhandle anyone I want. I’ve also started to try and stop placing my self worth on my physical and sexual appeal.

Now that you have read this, I offer some insight and advice. Men/male identifying humans are just as subject to body image issues as anyone else, but no one talks about it, it’s a form of weakness. We fall into the “social media” traps of perfection, and for some of us, it shakes us to the very core with no one to talk to or articulate our feelings to. There are many groups, websites and places to see this in action. We hurt, we have broken confidence because of it, and sometimes we need help building ourselves up.

Male Humans: Be who you are, be happy with how you look, and if you’re not – don’t change for the wrong reasons like I started, change because you WANT TO, if you try to change for others, you’re doomed to failure, and being trapped in an unhealthy spiral of pleasing people who do not know what a fucking rockstar you are. Do things that make you feel confident, don’t mistake others validation for confidence, it’s not, and not healthy.

Somewhere along the way I realized the things my girl said to me were my truth, not the lies my brain created trying to chase approval. All it takes is one person to see the things you don’t, and more often than not, you should listen to them, the positives they see are generally the truth.

Regards,

Syn

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Sexual Shame, Kink, and Starting Points.

I was a Virgin until I was 19.

Up to that point I didn’t even really know about masterbation, and the one time I tried I got caught by my mother which ended in a screaming fit from her about being “dirty” or somesuch, I don’t really remember.

My first real time having sex was unremarkable and unmemorable, and to be honest while I remember her(we dated for 2 or 3 years), and flashes of having sex, the first time in particular I don’t.

My third partner however, I won’t ever forget her, She was also my first blowjob sometime around the age of 22. The reason(s) I won’t ever forget her start with trauma and end with it too. The first time I came from oral sex I was unprepared, I didn’t know what to expect, and truthfully I didn’t warn her, because I didn’t know that was a thing. When I came, she immediately popped up and promptly spit my own cum back in my face, and proceeded to yell at me while rinsing with mouthwash, and, as she put it “get the filthy shit out”of her mouth.

That relationship was my “sexual awakening” I spent 5 years with her, and I was domestically abused, raped, and cheated on. Not to mention forced to sleep on my own couch without sex for close to 2 years before I finally managed to convince my family to come get me and bring me 4 hours to my home city.

During those 5 years, I was on my computer a lot when not working, and found Kink through websites like Wasteland, ICQ and Old message boards that have been long closed. The first time she ever caught me watching porn (kinky porn no less) she told each and every one of my friends I was a disgusting pervert who wanted to abuse her but lacked the balls so I had to jack off to disgusting porn instead of fucking her like a real man.

Once I got home, my pattern of picking sexually repressed and abusive partners continued, One couldn’t come from intercourse so used toys, and basically used me to facilitate a threesome between her and our female friend, where I was promptly completely ignored. I had one other partner during that time, and my rape at her hands resulted in the birth of my son, I was used as a sperm donor and shortly after we found out we were pregnant she went back to her Ex-bf who was unable to conceive.

I’m sharing all of this for a reason. It’s not pity, and it’s not for hope of some sort of epiphany – it’s to illustrate that once I was in a healthy, openly communicative and supportive relationship the shame took over, and still influences my life to a degree. I didn’t know how to talk to women (still don’t lol), and I damn sure didn’t know how to talk about the things I wanted to experience.

Sexual shame is a learned behavior, and not something men talk about a lot, nor the root causes. We tie far to much self worth into sexual performance, penis size and forget to just seek out experiences.

We enter this world for a multitude of reasons, Community, Sex, S&M, education, exploration, the list goes on. We always say solid communication and sharing is the key to making a kinky/authority transfer relationship work, but I say why stop there? Why can’t we have those tough conversations with other men and male identifying people? Why can’t we share those snippets of ourselves for information purposes?

In the end we need to start having these conversations so we can start living a sex positive existence, but doing so in a healthy, respectful and informative manner – We might just end up creating a space where BDSM, and alternative sexual expression is celebrated, rather than shunned.

Regards,

Syn

Vulnerability: Owning my Shit.

Lately I’ve been talking a lot about Healthy vulnerability and what that means to different people, how we can be vulnerable with others, and boundaries when choosing to be vulnerable.

For myself something I have always struggled with is sexual expression and discussion in how it relates to me and my needs, wants and desires. There is a small voice in the back of my brain that adds shame, anxiety, and forces me to fight more than I should to express myself. We, as humans are sexual beings and in the sex positive spaces and conversations I find myself in, vulnerability in expressing these things are something I -need- to get comfortable with.

My thoughts on why this is necessary are hard to put in words, so this might sound a bit muddled.

Aside from my own needs to communicate (I talk ALOT in case anyone is surprised by this revelation), my nesting partner is someone I not only desire, but want to be vulnerable with – she has, over the years, helped me to become the best version of myself I have ever been. This alone deserves complete transparency, openness and implicit trust. Over the years she has helped me explore my sexuality, kinks, and done so with zero judgement, I detest the term, but for lack of a better one: she has been my safe space.

Sexual Compatibility and Ethical non monogamy is something else on my mind in this regard. Polyamory, and that we are in an open (albeit selective) relationship, opens so many doors that took me a long time to become comfortable enough to address…I understand that all Poly and ethical relationships don’t revolve around sex, but for me, a lot of my connectedness comes from sex, S&M and taking care of the people who I choose to spend time with, however that manifests. My Comfort with these sides of myself is important in pursuing these needs and wants, so that I can find people who will enrich my experiences, and in turn perhaps I can enrich thiers.

In my travels I’ve also done no small amount of self discussion and reflection on my sexual orientation, for years I defaulted to heterosexual. I was really unaware of Pansexuality, gay, and all the other stops along the sexuality spectrum. So I went searching and exploring. I can say with positivity that I am 99.5% straight, however it took a lot of exploring to be sure. I love women, I love their bodies – small, big, thin, muscular, athletic, curvy… Sexually they just do it for me. I should point out, that as un-PC as it sounds, male genitals are the hang up… I just don’t find they do anything for me.

The last part of tying it all together? I need to get more comfortable in asking or communicating what I want, and the narrative I have kept for far too long.

A few months ago I had a pretty heavy talk with a Sister of mine, in front of her partner (a Brother) and my girl. I felt comfortable for the first time in a while to have my little dark corners flooded with a spotlight. It was bad enough she had to grab me by the beard and force me to listen, but I did.

Really a lot of the things I have started exploring and trying to work on boils down to confidence, and cultivating a lack of fear. In the end I have been ruled by old patterns and habits that tell me I’m not attractive enough, or desirable, or not pursue something because I don’t offer as much as the next guy. I short change people and their thoughts by offhandedly dismissing compliments, and anyone that knows me can tell you that someone could say right to my face they find me attractive, and my brain will simply ignore it. I have worked actively in the last few months to change my thoughts, as well as my acceptance of these things, because it’s not fair to me, and not fair to others.

So why did I write this whole rambling mess?

Simply, put – because I need to work on these things, and I understand that without putting a voice to them and making them visible, then I will simply ignore them long term hoping they go away.

Vulnerability isn’t pretty but it does help build trust, both with others and yourself. So here it is, some of the things I need to work on, they have a voice now, they have Substance, and they will be easier to work on because I gave them that push into word rather than thought.

Regards,

Syn



Sex Positivity For Men.

One of the big issues I mentioned in a previous writing regarding toxic masculinity was sex positivity and male body image.

I’ll admit as the urge to write this struck me, I was at a bit of a loss. Traditionally I haven’t talked about sex much, it’s uncomfortable for me. As I have mentioned before I was raised in an environment where you NEVER talked about sex, masterbation, or even what sort of porn I watch. This trend was not just my parents, but the people I grew up around, and dated.

I find even now in kink positive spaces, or other places claiming to be sex positive, Male sexual desires are not spoken of much at all. Sure, you’re liable to read a fetish list, or erotica, or even some “fuckit” list, however the realm of female sex positivity has the lock down on really talking about activities, practices and “how-to’s”.

I’m sure out in more mainstream social media sites you’ve at some point seen the meme or post that goes “Men only want one thing and it’s fucking disgusting”. So my question is this, if you claim to be sex positive, no matter your gender identifier – how often do you call this out as hypocritical bullshit? Or for that matter ANYTHING that shames men as sexual beings? I know plenty of women who State that if a man has a Dick pic as a profile picture on Fetlife not to bother messaging, and then off they go to comment their appreciation about a magnificent cock on someone else’s profile pic. Are we prepared on a whole to call out that behavior?

I feel I have to explain something before I continue. I am not saying that you shouldn’t call out a random dick in your DM’s/inbox or someone pressing sexual fantasy on you out of the blue, however I think on a whole we should encourage discussion of sexual fantasy, positivity and conversation, WHEN IT IS RELEVANT.

So here are a couple of questions for the hive mind I would like to present for discussion or at least reflection.

If you are sex positive, is it all or nothing? Are you only willing to have those conversations about male sex positivity etc, if you find that person physically attractive?

Do you think it’s creepy for men to be direct or upfront about sexual desire and activity, even if it’s something you personally don’t find tickles your pickle?

Do you think there is a double standard in sex positive circles? When women or female presenting individuals discuss explicit sex it’s “hot or sexy to be slutty” but is the reverse true? if the average man discusses those same things, do we encourage discussion or appreciation in the same way?

Finally, How do you think that we, as sex positive humans, can encourage a more balanced view on sex positivity across the gender spectrum? or do we even need to?

Personally I think we have a bit of work to do in normalizing sex positivity across the board for all gender expressions, however I think the most work we have is with Het CiS men like myself, I know the lgbtq2+ communities have their own work to do in this regard, but honestly I am not equipped to speak on those things, nor would I feel comfortable doing so.

Regards,

Syn