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  1. It's available! Whew. That was almost too big of a blow I was dealt.
  2. There are psychological studies that show that intermittent reinforcement is actually the most powerful type of reinforcement in conditioning. In other words, the fact there might be a reward is actually more reinforcing than when there's a guaranteed reward. People are weird. Gambling is definitely an intermittent reinforcement kind of activity - it keeps hope alive while usually kicking your ass. I believe I read that is one of the reasons that for certain personalities, it is so addictive.
  3. I'm 54 too. Or will be in December. You look fab!
  4. It has never once occurred to me to post a photo and say, "look - no filter." Also, losing weight doesn't get rid of freckles 'n shit.
  5. Is "coming back from menopause" an actual thing? And why oh why would you want to?
  6. My thought about the whole Caelynn-Blake-Kristina-everyone else at Stagecoach thing is this: If you can't handle no-strings sex, don't offer it. If you think you can offer no strings sex as a way to get "in" with another person and make them fall for you, don't. Life is not a rom-com and people in rom-coms do not act like real people - they are the product of a writer's imagination. If you're offered no-strings sex, don't believe it or expect the other person to behave as if that is what they offered in the first place. If you did offer no-strings sex and someone took you up on that, you've given up your right to get mad when that person takes you at your word and believes the sex was truly no-strings. Makes me nuts when people claim that it's just an easy, no-strings attached sexual relationship and then get all bent when the other person believes them and acts like that. I taught my now adult son that just because a woman claims they won't be attached if they have sex doesn't mean it's true. Nobody can predict how that post-coital neurochemistry will affect them - it can be as powerful as a hit of heroin and activate cycles of addiction that people mistake as "love", even when the original agreement was, "It's just sex and nothing else." I've known many people who claimed they could handle that, but really they thought it was a secret backdoor way into the other person's heart. As Blake was trying to defend himself onstage and everyone was villainizing him while taking up for Caelynn, all I could think was, "Blake is not wrong here." What the hell was he supposed to do? A true gentleman doesn't kiss and tell, but neither does a true lady. What a ridiculous bleeping double standard the whole Bachelor ethos has.
  7. That's the thing with abusers though. Their abuse victims can be "perfect" - that is, they can do everything the abuser demands, keep their head down, etc., and the abuser will still find a reason to get angry and become abusive. I find her disgusting. It is very hard to watch abuse as entertainment.
  8. I agree. Everyone wants to feel desired, hence the pawing I suspect. It's validating when we believe someone desires us. It just makes me nuts this focus on physical attractiveness in relationships, but I also understand it. It's just so ultimately devoid of anything of value over the long-term, though. I speak from experience. When I was in my teens and twenties, I was a very pretty young woman. I thought that attractiveness made me special, when honestly, it was a genetic gift and had nothing to do with me. As a result, I constantly had men hitting on me, and at the time, I was sure many of them were punching above their weight class. And so I had my choice, and I always chose the physically beautiful specimens. This led to two failed marriages in quick succession because what I discovered is that these pretty men I was choosing may have been easy on the eyes, but there wasn't a lot going on underneath. And they didn't give a crap that there was a lot going on underneath with me. I got so tired of everyone being about my looks all the time and not giving a darn about my intelligence or personality or anything that actually made me me. The third time was a charm because I learned. I married a man that is arguably a geek - self-identified as such. He's brilliant and kind and also socially awkward as f*ck. He was not smooth, and he hasn't gotten any smoother after 20 years together. He had no "game." I find him attractive, but he's not the hot dude with the rocking gym bod I usually went for. Now I'm not saying that all attractive people are empty vessels, nor am I saying all less physically attractive people are deep. But there is a little bit of a pattern I've noticed that when you are very attractive, the world often just sort of hands you crap, and people flock to you because you're nice to look at. And so sometimes, you don't "work on yourself babe" because any of the things you need to work on may be hidden behind all the physical beauty until something (like two divorces) brings it to light.
  9. I didn't get to watch this until this morning, and I'm not all the way through yet, but I did just watch Iris get rejected and something sort of started knocking around in my brain. Iris's virginity has always been a third person in their marriage, and it is clearly Iris's true significant other. But I suspect she also uses it as a protective mechanism. I think Iris has been hurt a lot in her short life. When I was a late teen and in my early 20s, I was very self-protective as well. Mine manifested in different ways, but I recognize the signs in Iris, such as how she looked devastated but then immediately bucked up after Greg's rejection. I'm like that still to a certain extent. There are times when I may be absolutely devastated inside, but I put on a brave face and power through because I don't want anyone else to see how sad I really am. I suspect it's going to be easy for her when she's rejected in any relationship to believe that her partner just couldn't handle her virginity. It gives her a safe fall guy. So I think it's a crutch. It sounds like from what her mom said she's been rejected a lot, and with her virginity, which is definitely unusual at her age and in this day and age, it gives her a convenient excuse. I've always taught my kids that if there's something that happens over and over again in your life, the common denominator is you - not the thing that keeps happening, so you need to dig deep to discover what inside of you is causing that same experience to keep manifesting. I suspect Iris's virginity is her go-to common denominator. It protects her from looking at what the real issue is, which is something inside of her. I wish her well and I hope she finds it, because she seems like at her heart she is a lovely young woman. Stuff like the rigidity and the yappiness are annoying, for sure, but those things tend to iron out with age and maturity. I think she has a solid core and has the potential to mellow and mature so that the beautiful young woman she is manifests consistently. Also, I'm thrilled for Deonna and Greg. I'm also a tad shocked at how fast the decisions are going but also happy because I hate how much they usually draw these things out with all of that tense music. Meh.
  10. A large behind was associated with being fast? I think I sort of get this from a white Catholic schoolgirl growing up in the 70s and 80s perspective. I sprouted boobs in third grade. They continued to - er - flower. The nuns were not amused. My mom was not amused. It was assumed because I had a nice set of tatas from 8 years old onward, that I was not only gonna be a big old slut, but probably already was. My mom spent a lot of time threatening me about going too far with boys even when boys were the farthest things from my mind. The nuns spent a lot of time giving me disapproving looks. It was a whole thing. For instance, when I was 15 or 16 (and still a virgin), I was in a department with my mom clothes shopping during a sale - so it was super crowded. Suddenly, apropos of nothing, my mom looked at me and said at the top of her lungs, "I sure hope you're on the pill!" I wanted to die I was so embarrassed. She also used to always worry I was going to "go into the bushes with boys." Yeah - because that's where I'd choose to have all of my sexual experiences - in itchy old bushes with bugs everywhere. And so, as I got into my teen years and started to explore physical intimacy in the way a lot of teen girls in the 70s and 80s did, I definitely had to balance out all of these messages I'd received from all of the disapproving adult females in my life. It was a struggle for a while. It's tough stuff for an 8-year-old girl not even thinking about sex to fathom, and the longer it goes on and the more influential people in your lives that feed you those messages, the more you internalize them. And certainly as a Catholic school girl, I also struggled with shame about not only my body changing, but also with my growing interest in physical intimacy. But then I had sex, realized it was awesome, and I got over it... I suspect Iris equates virgin with "good girl". And so she wants everyone to see and know she is "good" because she is a virgin. She's still trying to live up to the social strictures under which she was raised. For some reason, she hasn't made the leap to, "I'm an adult and I can do any damn thing I please with my body" yet. Oh also - my mom also told me that only prostitutes and gypsies get their ears pierced. I responded by getting mine pierced about eight times, as well as getting my nose pierced. My husband tells me I am "demand resistant."
  11. My 23 year old son tells me nerds are all the rage now. Apparently members of the opposite sex seek them out because nerds are all that. As for weight; I'm sorry. Overweight people are allowed to have love, too. Weight says nothing about a personality or who a person is inside. Unattractive people are also allowed to have love. Same reasons. So sure, maybe some of these people aren't super attractive, or they're overweight, or they are "nerds." But the reason they have been alone so far is more likely that they are not super great people on the inside or they have some issues they need to work out. I'm in my 50s, and I've been with my husband for 20 years. Here's what I know. Looks fade. Weight comes and goes. What matters is finding a genuinely good human being regardless of what they look like, how big their nose is, how big of a nerd they are, or how large their ass is. I kind of think if someone is trying to solve their problems or build self-esteem by working on how they look (lose weight!) (have plastic surgery!) (stop being a nerd!), then chances are they're going to still have all the same self-esteem and relationship issues.
  12. No shame here, man. I love pain medication. It is currently protecting me from the ravages of a kidney stone that's working its way through a bunch of tiny tubes that are too small to accommodate it. But in 1996, I was young-ish and stupidish, and I opted to have my son at home on my couch with a midwife. On purpose. Like it was a conscious decision I made. No meds. Nine pounds of baby with a big round head and giant linebacker shoulders - you're gonna feel that coming out, let me tell ya. If I'd had a second baby and my doctor had allowed it, I suspect I would've gone for a twilight labor with as many pills and epidurals as they'd let me have. And perhaps a gin and tonic just in case the other stuff didn't dull it all.
  13. I will forever love you for a Zoolander reference. Will you accept this rose?
  14. I imagine her frantically running from hairbrush to hairbrush and drain to drain in her house and gathering all her random bits of hair so she can fashion a doll for baby Pierre.
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