Sunday, April 27, 2014

Help for our Homie B re: physical affection and stuff.

Today my darlings we have a homie who needs our advice.

B says this:

Hello, as from the "nutshell", I have no idea how to show physical affection. I'm going to be coming down from school to see my girlfriend since I'm going back to my homestate permanantly, and although she seems enthralled in how I treat her with my words, I'm not sure my actions can do the same. Plain and simple, I'm awkward. I've never kissed a girl, nor have I done the do (don't plan on it for some time though), but I have no idea how to show physical affection, at all. My motor skills are still kinda crummy from Asperger's and I don't want her to feel she has to compensate for my inability to correctly cuddle, or kiss, or anything that couples do. May I please have some advice on the subject, as well as other ways to show affection? I'm not sure on what's considered "good" or not, since I always worry if she might not like it, and I feel I can't ask because I'm expected to know?

First thing my darling friend is that there is no right way to do physical affection except to get consent.

So first things first, when you are ready ask your girl if you can give them a hug and then open your arms, wait for your bodies to get close and squeeze.

BOOM you did it.

What makes cuddling great is that there is no right way for it to be done. How you and your gf cuddle will depend on how your two awesome bodies connect.

What will make the difference for you and your partner is learning your intimate language. You are ahead of the game, your gf already loves how your words make her feel. That is like a +10 HP. You are doing awesome. You can say, GF I would like to hold your hand, let me know if I'm doing it the way you like.

While you two are in close physical proximity use your words. We'll pretend like I'm your gf and here is a starter convo you can have.

You: I would love to cuddle with you on the couch.

Me: YES let's do it.

Now this is the point where you learn each others bodies, your partner will learn how your motor skills work and you two can squirm around like fussy cats until it feels good.

And if one of you falls off the couch or accidentally hit each other,be embarrassed. The silly whoops things are in my opinion what makes relationships great. It's not serious business, you can laugh at each other because D'OH that was somebody's boob or somebody's foot fell asleep.

There is no shame in learning each other, that is how we build intimacy between us and the right way for the two of you will be your own special way and your own special intimacy.

So relax. You are going to do just fine.

Next kisses.

I know that people always think that a "good" kiss is all smooth and perfect but they really aren't.

You are probably going to bump noses, miss the mark and that is perfect that is great.

Kisses like cuddles and other physical affection doesn't happen smoothly even in the most experienced of us. Don't worry about if it's weird or maybe you miss their mouth on the first shot. This is another moment where you can know that it's okay if it's funny or silly.

The important thing I want to keep stressing to you B is that you are great. You are awesome and your GF thinks you are the bees knees. Everything else will fall into place not because you know the right way but because you are you, she is her and together you two are going to be great.

For every physical relationship there is an adjustment period. For instance.

I don't particularly like to be cuddled and held. I prefer to be rubbed and that took adjustment when my partner got together all those years ago. He had to learn how I like my butt rubbed, I learned where to rub his back or when he needs it scratched.

At first of course we talked about it, and now years later often it is just second nature.

No relationship starts off with perfect movie kisses and cuddles and junk. I just don't believe it.

Getting to know each other's bodies and movements is to me part of the joy in knowing another human.

And you my darling are yards ahead of where I feel like you think you are.

In your note I think you show that you are not only ready but you are going to be great because you are thinking about this stuff.

And let me tell you, you are not expected to know another person's body. You are smart and awesome but you are not a mind reader.

Start your relationship on a good foot by establishing some dialogue about important things like touching, your needs, her needs. That is vitally important. A lot of people don't think it is but, part of trusting your partner is talking to them about stuff that is kid of embarrassing but will serve you both in the long run.

It is not just okay, it is fantastic to say to your partner. Hey, I m new at this part so let's talk about it.

If your gf is more experienced than you, it is perfectly okay to ask her to take the lead and show you what she likes and what makes her comfortable. And you can work it out from there.

I know you are nervous and probably scared and that is okay. That is normal.

And as for her compensating here's the thing.

That is part of life regardless of how our bodies function.

For instance.

My partner Uniballer is disabled. He has some mobility issues.

When we walk together I slow down and often we take easier routes. I check n on him.

Not because I feel like I need to compensate for his inabilities but because I care about him and he is my partner. That is what you do for people you care about. Frankly, if that becomes an issue with your GF that is her issue not yours.

From the way you worded your note, I'm going to guess someone has given you the impression that your needs are somehow out of line.

They are not.

When somebody loves you, they need to love all the things that make you who you are including your motor skills. That is what we do when we are in relationships.

I will use myself and Uniballer as an example again.

Sometimes I have problems with my balance and I have really bad vision. There are times when he has had to hold me up, or take my arm to help keep me from falling. Sometimes (okay a lot) I twitch or flail and drop things. I've broken every single glass I've ever owned, we have two bowls because I've broken the rest and he has had to give up and be mindful of not buying anything in glass jars because I will probably break it.

 Now I have had partners who had no patience to deal with these things or behaved like they were going above and beyond in dealing with them.

Notice I am not with them anymore.

To be with me, one must accept that my body does not always function in what society would call a normal way.

To deny or ignore that is to deny and ignore the totality of what makes a Shannon a Shannon.

That means you too.

You are not incorrect or about to do anything badly. You are perfect B. You are so great, someone wants you in their life with your motor skills and inexperience and all.

So now I want you to take a deep breath.

Let it out.

Listen to me.


B you are ready to be a loving and awesome partner.

B you are ready to learn how to do physical affection with your partner.

For some other quick tips.

As you get to know each other physically, remember it is okay to ask. It is great to talk about your needs and those of your partner.

Laugh, cause thi isn't serious business. You can laugh with and at each other because well sometimes stuff is just funny and laughter is a pretty great tension breaker.

You are not doing it wrong. You just haven't yet figured out what works for you and your gf and that is totally okay. That is how humans work.

You are with your impaired motor skills just fine. You are worth geting to know how to work physical affection with.

Understand this B.

When a person cares for you, it is natural to adjust. That is life. That is how any relationship works when it is working well.

We see our partner or friend or kidlet has a need, we work with it.

That is not just good it is great and a good foundation to build a great relationship on.

We understand each other's needs and we talk about them even if they are weird or we may feel like we're asking for too much.

You are not too much you are just right.

I know I'm repeating myself but it is vitally important that I feel like I've let you know B that it's not necessarily the mechanical how of physical intimacy (from holding hands to doing the thing) are done but how we approach them in terms of consent and open communication about what we need.

Let's look at it in the long term for a moment.

Let me tell you another Uniballer/Shannon story.

A few years ago I got a terrible intestinal virus or something.

I got up to to go work, almost fainted and had to crawl to Uniballer to wake him up because I was panicking because I felt so strange.

Then not only was I barfing but I pooped a little on the bathroom floor.

I managed to call into work an then I laid in the hall outside the bathroom crying and when Uniballer checked on me I looked up t him, in tears and said.


And burst into tears anew.

He wiped up the poo, made sure I had called into work. Helped me wipe my butt and put me back to bed.

I was terribly embarassed once I sort of came to my senses.

He laughed and gave me water.

I tell y'all this to illustrate the point that, part of partnering with other people means sometimes you have to accept their poop.

Both literally and metaphorically.

So remember B.

This is a part of a greater thing. Not only will you two have some time to get to know each other's bodies but you will learn how to communicate your needs with each other and you get to cuddle and stuff.

NOW we do something great. I turn it over to the smartest people on the internet.

I know somebody out there also has Asperger's so if you do too, please feel free to chime in with your advice.

Everybody else, come on. Help our homie B out and B, my friend please feel free to report back.

Bring your GF too if you like. I am super ready to crowd source support for you two.

How is everybody else doing?

I am so close to finishing V2.0 of the self care guide. So close y'all.

Unfortunately I will have to charge 6$ rather than 5. It is just so much work.

Also I am working on possibly (if I sell well enough) doing some special print edition packages.

And I am working on designing some merch.

Some other stuff has been hard but I am working it out.

If you'd like some news on my other writing I was interviewed which you can see here. And as always you can check out my etsy store for cheap literary entertainment.

Now my homies I need some tea and to get back to work.

Homo Out.



beatfreak said...

One tip for B: start small. Hand holding. Kisses on the cheek and kisses on the lips (without tongue) are great places to start.

Also one of the biggest things you can discuss with your partner is what kind of touch makes them feel cared for.

Anonymous said...

I have Asperger's also (and the shaking and stuff) but I'm asexual, so I have a slightly different perspective. I have been in a really toxic relationship, though, so I can recommend that consent and respect are the most important things ever for feeling comfortable with yourself and your partner. As someone who has a sensory disorder, I also want to say that sometimes you (or your partner) will get annoyed and headache-y by flashing lights or stupid people partying upstairs or that repetitive clicking noise or the cold or WHATEVER and the important thing is to try to adjust for that and not ever say "that's stupid, I'M not hot/tired/upset/in pain". So headaches may happen and that is normal and okay and you will be grumpy but you will get over it and it will all be good because your partner will love you even when you are a grump. Regarding intimacy, remember there are lots of things (massages, holding hands, cooking dinner, etc.) that totally count as intimacy but are non-sexual, which is important at all stages of a relationship but especially at the beginning when, as you say, you don't intend to do the do any time soon. Also remember that kissing is not for everybody, so if you decide you don't like it then your relationship will not suffer for it! You will find other ways of being physically intimate with your partner, and it will be rad. :)

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