Dear Internet,

I am frightened.

On paper my marriage was flawless.

TheSoonToBeExHusband and I had the trappings of a couple who had it all. We had a beautiful home, we had a vacation home, we were both educated and made good money. Our individual needs for space, both of us creatures of solid independence that were attractors to us both, allowed us the freedom we needed to thrive. We challenged the other and we learned from the other. Our differences is what made us strong because our worlds were so vastly different and so remarkably the same, we connected on levels that we never thought possible with another human being.

In the beginning, our relationship was glorious.

There was not a single event that said “aha! this is ending” but rather, it was a slow, agonizing death. The sex slowed to a trickle. Then stopped. The affection was debated and negotiated. He would give me the world if he had it, but he couldn’t give me himself. He told me this, many times. He could not trust me not because I had done something wrong but because he could not trust anyone. Period. His own past was a chock a block of defense mechanisms that I could not penetrate no matter how hard I rammed against them. I was so desperate for him to love me and let me love him, but I could not ever hope to win.

I remember we were laying in bed one evening watching some schlocky movie when a romantic scene came on. I remember thinking that as the male lead grasped the female lead into a passionate embrace, I would never have that feeling again. I began to cry.

In the beginning when we were dating, he would throw me up against a wall and fuck me just because he could. And now a few scant few years later, I would never have my husband grab me and kiss me as if his life depended on it ever again. Oh, he gave me affection for we cuddled all the time, but that missing bit of raw primal sexual urge was gone and I found myself making allowances for those missing needs. He protected and supported me when the crazy hit. He took excellent care of me when I was ill. He made me laugh. He grounded me when I when I got too manic. He had a lot to give me and he did, but withheld the one thing I really wanted: himself.

Bipolars are attracted to the next big thrill. Many a relationship has ended with me because the honeymoon phase wore off and reality set in. “Oh, you’re not constantly wanting to get in my pants every second of the day? Well obviously you don’t love me enough.” So I reasoned, with TheSoonToBeExHusband, the honeymoon was wearing off and we were now in the dull throes of day to day life. This is what adulting IS, correct? Love isn’t always about sex. So I consoled myself that I was being manipulated by the media into believing that if my husband wasn’t fucking me every second of the day, the relationship must be terrible when it really wasn’t.

The sex could be fixed, and I knew that, so I sat down with him numerous times and explained what I needed. What I wanted. And it wasn’t just about getting fucked so hard my toes would curl, but it was about the act of seduction and tension. I needed to be wooed on occasion. To be desired. To be thought of as sexy and worth fucking. But he no longer agreed with the meeting of our sexual needs. He said at one point he thought he was asexual. His desire for sex was not the same as mine and while he could see about meeting my needs, he was content about where he stood with his. But he would try.

But it wasn’t enough. And soon, it wasn’t just about the sex, it became about everything else. The more he withdrew, the more frustrated I became. I fought to fix this, but every discussion brought out reasoned (him) analytics about the relationship while I couldn’t make him understand or could not apparently articulate that relationships were not about logic or reason, but also about emotion and feeling. It’s also about the sharing of the worlds.

He slowly stopped wanting to be a part of my world. I was his pookie bear, and he loved me, but I became more of a household pet than a lover or even a partner. I was to be petted and adored, mainly from afar, but everything else was off the table. At times he was cruel. He would grab me and give me a toe curling kiss, my body would meld into his, my arms around his neck, begging for more. Then he would stop. He would say he was not in the mood and walk away.

No amount of editing is going to make this clean and easy to follow. Life is not easy to follow.

I knew TheSoonToBeExHusband was depressed. He knew he was depressed. I begged him to get professional help and he refused. A long history of misguided therapy in his youth tainted seeing a therapist as an adult. He offered to work on it his own way: St. John’s Wort, working out, light therapy. There would be days where he would be semblance of his old self and days when he couldn’t get out of bed. My depression, which I had mostly been free from in recent times, came back. I was drowning and I had no idea how to save myself, let alone him. Or even our marriage.

Several months later, I called my therapist and went back into therapy.

Over the last two years, I found myself negotiating everything to make it through the day, but what I found myself losing was large parts of myself in the process. I was not the woman he married, I had become a shell of myself. I no longer found the world to be a big cookie for me to eat as everything tasted of sawdust. What was the point of having financial freedom when all we did was stay locked in our house for days on end. In the three years we were living at Throbbing Manor, we never explored the neighborhood we lived in, so how were we to go out into the world and explore it as we once dreamed?

Sure relationships have problems, I get that. I know that. But how far do you put yourself out there to save it before it becomes too broken to fix? How much can love really conquer all? And at what price?


#teamharpy tweet clarification

Dear Internet,

I am taking a break from writing to clarify a common misconception that is being reported (I’ve seen it in other pieces as well) in regards to my tweets that launched the suit, namely that I purged them.

This is false. There are two things at play.

The first is that Twitter only displays the last 3,200 tweets on one’s timeline. This is found on Twitter’s FAQ. As I am a verbose tweeter, the tweets in question (made in early May of 2014) were no longer publicly accessible as of mid-August 2014. The only way to access them after that point was to either have a direct link to the tweet in question OR if you are the owner of the account, you can download your entire Twitter archive with all the tweets still intact but it would only be visible to you offline.

Twitter is not indexed by any of the big search engines (Google, Bing, etc) but there are apparently Twitter specific indexers that allows you to search a person’s timeline, however, it should be noted again that it can only search what is publicly available due to Twitter’s own parameters which is again, the last 3,200 tweets.

The second thing in play is that in mid-September, I changed my Twitter handle from @pnkrcklibrarian to @byshieldmaiden. All my tweets, followers and those I’m following also made the transition.

With @pnkrcklibrarian now freed up, I created a new Twitter account to hold the name. It was to make sure that no one used the name to impersonate me. This is why if you go to @pnkrcklibrarian, there is but one tweet and I follow no one.

Therefore any tweet in question that links to @pnkrcklibrarian will show up as being dead, but if you change the username to @byshieldmaiden, it should theoretically now show up.

I have been fairly transparent on WHY I made this move.

If you have any questions in regards to the case, please contact me via the #TeamHarpy website.


life-ring enclosure

Dear Internet,

Yeah, it’s been awhile. I’m at an undisclosed location for the week to make some hard choices, something I thought I did ages and ages ago when I decided to upend my life but apparently not as clear cut as I thought.

How did I get here? (Car and credit cards, but that’s the logistics and not the reasoning.)

While I’ve been doing a fairly good job of keeping my train wreck of a life off the internets except when absolutely necessary, you lot always knew the ends of my decisions and not the process of the whys. That was perhaps the most uncharacteristic thing about this whole blasted mess is that I’ve always kept a written track of what I’m doing and why, but as I’m being dragged through the mud across the internet due to #TeamHarpy1, I thought it might be just a bit wise to not to publicly say a damn thing.

But as the weeks have gone on, the impact of that internalization is damaging not just my brain, but also my body. I get random hives. My period is showing up every two weeks. I wake up at 4AM on an almost daily basis in a complete state of panic no amount of Klonopin can seem to fix. My moods are cycling so hard that I cannot trust what I’m feeling one minute to the next. I am free falling emotionally that what seemed like a brilliant decision one moment can feel great regret the next, which alternates with almost complete stoicism with emotional shutting down. I have been in tears so much, I’m surprised I’m not a prune.

What seemed so crystal clear weeks ago is now muddled and chaotic.

In order to regain control I made a few concrete decisions: Disconnect from the internet for awhile and find some place to be alone for a few days to clear my head and do some really hard thinking. But fuck the haters, I am going to put everything out on the damned blog. Maybe seeing it in print will help with the clarity and it will keep those who are needing to know how I’m doing.

So now you know WHY I’m here, so let’s move to the WHAT.

The stories consist of three main characters: Myself, TheBassist, and TheSoonToBeExHusband. So I’ll give you the tl;dr for the moment, with a fuller explanation tomorrow: I am in love with two men.

I did not leave TheSoonToBeExHusband for TheBassist. TheBassist and I started a relationship after I separated from TheSoonToBeExHusband. My marriage had been deteriorating for the last several years and this past spring, I had a sit down with TheSoonToBeExHusband about working on our marriage. He agreed to work with me on making changes. It didn’t happen. This was not the first time I had a sit down with him but it was the last. I had originally planned on using my year long writing sabbatical to also get my life back on track and hoped TheSoonToBeExHusband would come with me on that journey. When it became clear that he had no intent, I left.

TheBassist entered after the separation. We met up to see if the spark was still there after so many years. It was not a spark, but an explosion. He offered me many things TheSoonToBeExHusband would not and it was a chance for a true partnership with someone who would and could be my lover and equal.

So I decided to take a risk.

During the period as I started getting things ready, I felt very lucid and clear about all of my decision making. I had gone through a series of internal checklists and worked with my therapist on making sure I was doing the rational thing. Yes, there was emotions involved but I needed to also make sure what I was doing was not impulsive but the right choice for me.

And it felt right. Up until the day a few weeks after that I woke up out of a dead sleep at 4AM, woke TheBassist and said in all seriousness, “Why should I stay?”

And my emotional state has been getting progressively worse ever since.

To be clear, nothing has “happened.” TheBassist and everyone here have been beyond fantastic. I’ve been treated like visiting royalty and if I am indeed having a nervous breakdown, I couldn’t ask for better group of people to love me as I went through it. Also to the clear, TheSoonToBeExHusband has done nothing wrong since I left. He’s been an utter gentleman and is completely supportive of me.

This is nothing more than a pure case of my brain eating itself with something needs to be sorted and soon before I crack.

And with that, now I slumber. Until tomorrow.


1. #teamharpy: The flurry of activity after the public announcement of the case in mid-September has died down a bit, but two new recent articles in well regarded spaces (one a professional library publication and the other, a oft quoted law blog) has brought a flurry of new support AND haters to the fold. I’ve been laying low on Twitter, even more so after reading the hashtag, as it causes some massive FEELS. In addition to the slagging across Twitter, nina and I are being eviscerated across other social networks (reddit, Facebook groups, blogs, and so forth) on everything from we’re too ugly (her) or fat (me) to get harassed to questioning our mental health (mainly mine). Of course there is always the question of the legitimacy of our complaints with complete dismissal of nina and I as human beings because she’s transgendered and I’m bipolar.

After the first few dozen rounds by anonymous cowards on reddit and blog comments, my skin has grown thick, but the sheer viciousness and regularity still surprises me. What is also interesting is how much of my life is being scrapped from this site, digested, and reframed in an attempt to shame me. Which is kind of hilarious in its own right since I’ve always been brutally honest in the presentation of myself to the world. I have nothing left to lose, I’ve been saying that since the beginning, and yet not a day goes by where someone attempts to be helpful by pointing out I’m mentally unsound because of REASONS. It’s extraordinary the lengths trolls will go through to make their, albeit weak, point when it’s all been right there, in public view, for years. Trolls may be vicious, but they certainly are stupid.

This day in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 1998