Someone called me an idiot. I don’t mind. God protect me from people who think they know what’s going on.
Tim, an utterly sweet gay man with a great love and knowledge of Manchester- he was passionate about the restoration of the Victoria Baths– told me that he had had relationships where he was Top, and others where he was Bottom, and he found the erogenous zones on his body changing between the two. We change to fit other people. One highly empathetic woman, a life-long carer, told me that she had had a series of dreadful relationships because she liked dominant men and they overwhelmed her: they were the centre of their Universe, and became the centre of hers. She felt the same way they did. So now she has a partner who respects her and, aware she can change like this, they both guard against it.
The hierarchy in any organisation can set the tone of that organisation. This is how things are done, how we see things. This is how we all feel. There is great pleasure in feeling the same way as another: we feel together, so we feel closer. It is hard to change it from below.
Don’t do that to me. You attempt to exert the force of personality to change mine, my feelings, my opinions. That took me aback, actually. Is that what I am doing? It was more than disagreement- some shock, some distress. I thought, after, it might be evolved primate behaviour, just the way we are with everyone, influencing or being influenced. But I can engage my conscious mind to prevent it. Your freedom is important to me. You are far more beautiful, free, than anything I could control you into.
I distressed myself completely falling into what I imagine might be another’s mind set. It seems to me I can choose my feelings. So, man tells of triumphs from decades before. I can choose to see this as boring or pathetic, or I can share his joy in the triumph, however old it is. How lovely of him, to share with me something which still delights him!
I choose that feeling which most brings us together. I want that togetherness, here, now. How lovely of him.
And- I am myself. I will see the world your way only for the moment, then I am otherwise, for I am myself. I too am a strong personality.