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I cannot believe how quickly 2018 has gone. It definitely feels like it has been significantly quicker than other years, even though it has had the same number of months, weeks and days as every other year that we have ever lived before. I cannot believe that it is over and that we are about to roll into another year with absolutely no idea about what is ahead. I wrote a blog on Christmas Day last year called Reflection it started like this:

I think that Christmas, whether you celebrate it or not, is a mad period because it signifies the end of the year, it’s a time for reflection, for taking stock, and for letting go. It’s a time to value your life and that of those around you, like, we ALL made it through 2017, some weren’t so lucky, and so we should feel grateful and joyful for the fact that we did. It’s a time to remember people who have passed and to appreciate those close to you. It’s a time of sparkly lights, parties, and meeting up with good friends. I have barely done any of that this year. I have had a bit of a hermit Christmas, I’m a bit under the weather and I’m flat broke and I just haven’t been feeling it. I’ve made very little effort apart from with my Son. I have felt a bit sad today that it’s now over and I have to wait until next year to make the most of it again, because I do love Christmas and all it signifies, making it through another year.

With the year coming to a close I wanted to do a bit of reflecting and to give some thought to my new year’s resolution’s for 2018. 2017 has been a very weird year for me, I started all this in mid-February, I had no plan in my head, it all just sort of happened. I had been thinking of writing down my stories for a while, and then I met Callum and he got me into writing again. We split up after a brief ‘relationship’ and I got over him in November 2016. Since him there has been NO men. Obviously there have been a few dickheads here and there, guys I’ve exchanged numbers with or had dates with – you’ve read about them in the blogs, but there has not been one man who has made me FEEL in a whole year. Callum was the last person I slept with or felt for. Between November 2016 and August 2017 I was completely man free, apart from a kiss with Corey in April. In August I went off the rails a bit and had a one night NO sex stand with some idiot I met in a rave, and then had a brief 2 week affair with a 25-year-old who I met at the same rave, but aside from them, I have had no kisses, cuddles, hand holds, sex, I haven’t even found anyone who I have wanted to consistently speak to for more than 2 weeks, nothing, and it has been a weird experience for me.

My whole adult life I have used men to fill a void that was made by men, and every time I tried to use a man to fill that void, the void would just get bigger. I could never be happy being single, I always felt like I had to be talking to someone, I’d feel lonely and weird if I wasn’t for long periods. I had to sort it out and the only way to do that was to go man free and celibate. Being man free changed everything, and obviously so did this starting this blog and Instagram. I have learnt so much from you guys, and from writing down my own experiences, and now my whole attitude to men has changed in a really positive way, I am so happy being single, and now that I’m acting on red flags, I feel far more in control of my own life. And so I wanted to do a little round-up of the year, a reiteration of some of the most important things that I have been shouting about for the last 10 months, the shit that has got me through.

Reading that back made me feel a bit shit to be honest. As I write this I have got a cold and am a bit under the weather and so I have hardly been out, it’s like Ground Hog Day. I feel disorganised and I haven’t made the most of Christmas like I promised myself I would. There has also clearly been no progress on the man front. Even less than last year but I think that the reason for that is that right now I do not need the distraction of a new relationship. I think I need to bang out my book first, have a solid career going and then think about finding a partner. There is no void though, I do not feel desperate or insecure because of a lack of male attention like I used to and so even though I haven’t found my forever man, I remain in a contentedly single place whilst I await him, although I’m not going to lie, I have had a few moments where I’ve been watching films alone at night (like Bird Box) and have really craved some male company, but that passes every morning when my son gets into bed with me.

So yeah, my initial thoughts upon reading back on that for the first time in a year was FML I have literally not progressed AT ALL, but I haven’t regressed, so at least that’s one thing. The year has just gone by in one big blur. I had to stop and think month by month what actually happened in 2018 – where did it go? What the fuck did I do? So I read over the blogs that I posted in 2018 and it made me realise how much progress I have actually made and how much fun I had this year, if I didn’t have the blogs I wouldn’t have that memory jolt and so I have realised how important it is to keep a diary. I kept a diary for years but I gave up when I became an adult, it’s a good way to get your thoughts out but also to remind yourself of your growth. Blogging or starting a diary is a good shout for 2019.

I think that everybody in England had possibly the best month of their entire lives in June when we had an insane heat wave that never seemed to end and England looked like they were going to win the World Cup. My son still sometimes wakes me up singing “It’s coming home, it’s coming home” and it genuinely makes me happy because it reminds me of that time when everyone was in a state of joyousness. It is so important that we look at all the small things that made our year, the things that made us grow, the fun we had, the mistakes we have learnt from, the times where we have enforced boundaries, the times when we have dealt with situations differently to how we would have dealt with them a year ago, the risks we have taken. It makes sense to think about all the things that went right this year. If you had a business you would do an annual review of finances, areas of growth and areas that require improvements, it is just as important to take time out to reflect on your own life. For all of us there will be things that have gone wrong, or things that we didn’t achieve, but it is important to take your focus off the negative and to give yourself a break. So what if you wanted to give up smoking but you are reading this with a fag in your hand? So what if you wanted to lose 2 stone but you actually gained 1? So what if you wanted to find a life partner but you got ghosted three times and had a one night stand after your work Christmas do? It’s not the end of the world. You are alive. You have made it through and now you get to start all over again, fulfilling the promises you made to yourself last year and adding new ones. We can all make 2019 bang if we put our minds to it.

So yeah, on reflection, I have learnt a lot this year. And hopefully I have been able to pass some of it on to you guys. Here’s a little summary of what I learned in 2018:

Face the things that are holding you back and be bold in letting them go

I worked in the same field (but in a variety of different roles) since 2002 and for the first few years I loved it, but it was a career where I was constantly dealing with other people’s trauma, literally day in day out from 9am to 5pm I was dealing with perpetrators and victims of abuse. I got to the point where I was burnt out and I started hating going into work everyday. I earned a good wage and had the security of a pension, sick pay and annual leave, but even on my decent salary being a single parent living in London I was finding myself in my overdraft on payday. It suddenly occurred to me that my intention was to stay in my job forever until I retired at 65 because it offered me security and that felt scary considering I could barely make ends meet and therefore was not really that secure. The thought of it freaked me out.

The job was also massively holding me back because I was frightened of people at work or clients finding this page and losing my job as a result so I was having to turn down opportunities to talk on the radio etc. I couldn’t progress this while I was there. I decided to believe in what I have got here – which is hard because I am not a narcissist and so unwavering self belief does not come easy to me, but I do truly believe that I could make a career out of Lala and so I took the leap and quit my job, I had been thinking about resigning for a long time and then one day I got an e-mail to tell me that a wonderful man I had worked with for many years had died of a heart attack – and that was all the motivation I needed. I handed in my notice an hour after I read the e-mail. Within days of handing in my notice I was contacted by the BBC about doing a regular weekly dating slot on Cherry Healy’s show, I could never have said yes if I was still employed by the time that it started. It confirmed to me that you have got to make big brave jumps in order to open up new doors. It taught me that no matter how scary it seems to leave your job, or move, or end a relationship, being brave and taking calculated risks really pays off. Letting go of things that are holding you back surges you forward. Be bold, follow your dreams, take life by the bollocks and squeeze the shit out of it. Let go of all your dead wood in 2019 and watch your life thrive.

Roadmen are not attractive

It sounds pretty obvious and it is definitely something that I should have learnt many years ago but the Sahara like situation that is my love life has occasionally led me to making some silly choices. Like speaking to a local roadman in February this year (in case you don’t know – a roadman is a general term for someone who makes their living through criminal activity, gangs, drugs, fraud, etc). He was so so sexy, but so so incredibly dodgy. I only had one date with him and I didn’t get involved but I was tempted. He still messages me occasionally now – from prison. In fact – he sent me a ‘Merry xmas babe’ message – from prison. I did not respond apart from to ask him if he was still in jail. In previous times I would have got involved with him without question. I would have been swayed by his face, clothes, money and general swag. I would have overlooked the roadman thing with the belief that I could help him to turn his life around. I would have overlooked all the red flags for drama and danger and I would have rolled in fanny first to a messy dodgy situationship. I have learnt from previous roadman mistakes and I am no longer making them. There is nothing attractive about a man who has not turned his hustle into something legitimate by the time he’s in his thirties. Stability is sexy.

Once a fuckboy, always a fuckboy

In February I posted the blog Once A Fuckboy, Always A Fuckboy . It was all about my mate Caramel Dixon (not his real name) who was a guy I nearly fell in love with in 2015 but it turned out he had a girlfriend. He became my best friend and there was nothing sexual between us at all until just before Valentine’s Day this year. We ended up having a fumble and things got weird and we have not seen or spoken to each other since. He behaved pretty badly. I was initially really confused and pissed off and it made me feel like I hated all men because even the good ones turn out to be sexual fiends in the end. But then I reflected and I realised that just because Caramel and I got on like a house on fire does not mean that he was a good man. He was cheating on his girlfriend when I met him and he cheated on her with other women throughout our friendship. Once a fuckboy always a fuckboy – which is not to say that a man can’t be a shitty boyfriend to one woman and a fantastic Husband to another – but that inherent hyper-sexual/misogynistic/cheating fuckboy mentality is very hard to change without serious professional intervention and so I should have known. We had a great friendship and he taught me about fuckboys but I should have known better than to befriend someone who treats his girlfriend like shit. I haven’t missed him and there has turned out to be no loss – just a lesson. They rarely change.

There is no point in going backwards

Despite the fact that I had written a three-part blog titled That Time When I lost My Mind about my narcissistic wasteman ex Callum, in April I decided to meet up with him again (read about it here).. I was mainly inspired by creating blog material but I was also curious to see whether he had changed (I clearly hadn’t learnt that much from my situation with Caramel in February). I went to pick him up from the bus stop but I was a few minutes late as I had smashed a glass bottle before leaving my house. When I called him to say I was going to be late he had a go at me about being disrespectful and from that moment onwards everything went downhill. We argued the entire time and I told him about himself. He made me feel sick. In a way it was good because I felt like I had proper closure, like, I will NEVER reminisce fondly about this man in any way shape or form ever again. But I really didn’t need closure, the first time around was bad enough. Part of the problem with being single SINGLE is that sheer boredom can lead you to entertaining conversations with people who you should not really be talking to, but boredom can be fixed with books, films, friends, and a whole host of things other than shitty ex-boyfriends.

Another problem with 2018 dating is that it is actually very hard to even get to a date. I have used dating apps a few times this year and none of those times has resulted in a date, none of them have even resulted in ongoing WhatsApp exchanges. Most of them have not even gone further than a match, it feels like conversations are just not flowing. People match you but don’t talk, and even if they do they take days to reply, I have actually been doing that to people too. Nobody on dating apps seems to have Instagram, in fact out of the twenty or so people I spoke to only one had Insta. It’s all very fishy and it makes me feel like every man over 30 online already has a girlfriend. This dire situation leads you to thinking that it’s all fucking long and that familiarity would be preferable to anything – talking to exes means that you can skip the formalities and invite them straight round, you don’t have to go through the long process of a first date; you know what you are getting and it just seems so much easier. But can your heart take it? I knew that I was fully over Callum and so it was a safe decision for me because I knew he could not get under my skin. If you know that they could fuck up your life again then it is just not worth the risk. My interaction with Callum ended with me shouting at him in my car, he tried to respond but Drake ‘Nice For What’ came on the radio and I turned it up and drowned him out by singing in his face. I felt that tune so much and Drake is right – nice for what?? We do not owe cunts a damn thing, they are not entitled to our niceness, give them the energy they deserve. No fucking energy at all. No backwards movements in 2019.

I’ve lost self-confidence

I’m just not feeling myself anymore. I scrolled back to the start of my Snapchat story memories in 2015/2016 and I was absolutely loving myself then. I posted snaps all the time because I wanted to generate attention from whoever I was interested in at the time, and I looked great. Fresh, young, healthy. My body was also absolutely banging, I was a gym fiend and I was clearly eating incredibly well at the time, I really looked fantastic. I can say that now because I literally don’t look or feel anything like the person that I was back then. It made me really sad that I had let myself go in such a dramatic way without noticing the decline. I have put on over 2 stone and it does not suit me at all so I am dressing in leggings and baggy jumpers to hide my body, my boobs are so big that my winter jackets look tight and bulky. I still go to the gym very regularly so I’ve got this firm stocky look about me, like a Russian shot-putter. My eating must have just been out of control without me even realising, and this ain’t Christmas related, I was fat in July.

The difference between my life in 2015 and now is that before starting this page and having my epiphany about men my life basically revolved around men (and my son, obviously). I needed to look hot all the time because I wanted to meet people, I wanted to have sex and attract male attention. The time that I am now putting into my page was time that I used to use to improve my looks and look for men. I rarely post pictures or videos now because I don’t feel like I look great and because I have nobody to post them for. My personal insta is basically just pictures of my son now. I am 37 years old – when I am 47 I will be looking back to this time and wanting to punch myself in the face for wasting my youth feeling shit about myself. I will look back on pictures of me now and think wow, you were so fresh and healthy looking. The body positivity movement is fantastic and I genuinely believe that we should feel happy at whatever shape or size that we are and that we should never starve ourselves or restrict our food intake to meet an ideal set out by a misogynistic media – however, I’ve been big and I’ve been small and I know what works best for me, that does not mean that bigger is not attractive on other people. I am just so so ready for a glow up and I need to lose weight in order to get back to absolutely feeling myself again. No diets, no surgical alterations, just pure healthy buff-making, not for men, but for me. I want my son to feel proud of his hot Mum and I don’t want to hide under my clothes any more. I need to be in a Lycra catsuit by festival season. It’s happening, no fucking doubt.

Set your boundaries

In August I kind of caught feelings for the first time in a long time when I met Jamie, my Son’s Godfather’s cousin. We weren’t an ideal match, he wasn’t a man who I could see a future with, he wasn’t my usual type, but I just liked him. He made me feel safe, and desired, and sexy and he was the first person who I’d met in a long time who I wanted to spend my time with and be intimate with. He was the first person in a long time who wanted the same thing from me too – the feelings were definitely mutual. But Jamie gave me my first chance to really practice what I preach and I was absolutely determined to set my boundaries and not tolerate any of the same flakey nonsense that I had tolerated before, and so when he did that typical fuckboy thing of saying that he was going to be at mine at 9pm and then calling me at 9pm to tell me he would be there at 10pm, I shut it down and nipped it in the bud immediately and cancelled the date. I have spent too many nights sitting around in full make up waiting for a man who was supposed to be there 2 hours ago telling me that he’s round the corner. I’m not doing it any more. If I’m into a man and I’m seeing him that night I’m not just going to lose track of time while I’m out with my mates. If I’m seeing him at 9pm I’m shaving my vagina at 7pm in anticipation. I need those same levels of excitement about seeing me. I don’t want to be the place where you end up at the end of a Saturday night, I want to be your Saturday night.

If you accept it at the start you set a precedent for it to keep happening. The problem is that setting my boundaries impacted on our dynamic and we never quite got back on track after that. Especially because he fell asleep on his mates chair instead of coming to mine after we’d both been out as we had arranged. I liked him because I felt like he adored me but his actions weren’t reflecting that. He was not worth compromising my standards for, he wasn’t even my soul mate. I saw him again about a month after the chair incident and we had sex but there was nothing there at all. He hadn’t made an effort, he didn’t smell bad but he didn’t smell fresh, no sexy after-shave man smell. I just did not fancy him anymore and I was turned off by his lack of effort. It was well and truly over. It obviously wasn’t meant to be and I am glad that my boundary setting filtered him out.

********I have not seen or heard from Jamie in three months but about 3 minutes after writing that paragraph about him he sent me a DM saying “Merry Christmas, did you have a good one x” and I responded and we ended up having a conversation and as the conversation went on I ended up thinking that perhaps it would be a good idea to have sex with Jamie. He’s familiar, I would like to have an orgasm with another person present, it would be a novelty. He was good in bed and I don’t feel self-conscious around him in the slightest. He told me that he was at his Dad’s round the corner from mine where he is staying for a couple of nights and he asked if he could come and chill for a bit. I was up for it on a totally no strings basis. I’m child free, I’ve been wanting someone to Netflix and chill with and he seemed like the perfect candidate. I also thought that perhaps I’d manifested him by writing about him and so The Universe must want this to happen.

He told me he was going to be 45 minutes – in which time I had a shower, veeted and shaved every part of my body, oiled my body up with a body oil, sprayed deodorant, and perfume, and cleaned every nook cranny and orifice I possess within an inch of it’s life. Clean is sexy. He came over looking good, nicely dressed and well-groomed. I remembered that I did find him quite attractive. He asked me if I’d had a good Christmas and I told him that I had and I asked him if he had, he said he had. Then five seconds later he asked me if I’d had a good Christmas, and again I said I had. I tried to move the conversation along by asking him what he was doing for New Year’s Eve and after answering he went silent for a bit and then said “So, did you have a good Christmas?” I told him that he had now asked me that three times, four if you include when he asked me in the DMS, he said he was tired. Then he said “So, did little man have a good Christmas?” Weirdly, this has actually happened in a very similar way on a date I have had before with someone else and I am genuinely becoming worried about the conversational skills of men in London. The ick started from there, but it got so much worse.

We decided to watch People Just Do Nothing and have a little drink, but we both knew what time it was and so I leaned into his chest affectionately. When I did so I was faced with the most overwhelming stench of BO. You know when it sort of smells like bolognese sauce, meaty and oniony. It was not nice. I sat up and said “You smell like spaghetti bolognese” and he said “I just ate curry goat” and I said “Well you smell like bolognese, how can you turn up here without freshening up, not even one hint of after shave or deodorant. You made zero effort, like last time.” He said “I’m a clean guy, you know I am, I’ve just been running around sweating”. This really pissed me off, I said “So your balls must absolutely stink too” and he said “No way, my dick definitely smells clean. Smell it.”

I told him to fuck off but we were both laughing and he kept repeatedly telling me to smell it and so I said “OK but I’m going to tell you the truth, so prepare yourself for that” He laughed and said that he was certain his dick didn’t stink. He pulled his trousers and pants down to reveal a flaccid, rather pathetic looking penis that was stuck to his balls, I knew it was going to smell by how it looked, but I gave it a sniff (from about 5cm away) and it absolutely stank. It smelt cheesy, sweaty and musty. I told him to put it away and that it was disrespectful to turn up to my house with stinking dick and I said that he was mad for not even doing a little finger smell test before demanding that I smell his willy.

Him: I told you, I’ve been running about and I was at my Dad’s, I didn’t have a chance to freshen up.

Me: If I was going to link someone, no matter the destination that I was coming from, I would never turn up smelling less than absolutely fresh. You are staying at your Dad’s, how do you not have toiletries? How come you can’t borrow his? Every single part of me smells clean and hygienic right now. SMELL MY ARMPITS (so he did and he acknowledged that they smell flowery) SMELL MY VAGINA it’s the same, my toes and bum crack too! (he didn’t smell those)

Him: Yeah but you are in your house

Me: So?! I cannot understand how you could turn up here like that. If I could not freshen up before going to meet someone for sex I would not go – not that I have ever even reached the level of smell that you have tonight. You have made no effort. This shows where you rank me, I’m not the girl that you make an effort for, I’m the one who you just roll up to stinking of BO”

Him: It’s not like that but I hear what you are saying.

Me: It is exactly like that, I’m actually offended.

Then we sat in silence on my sofa watching the TV for about 10 minutes. I was willing him to leave in my mind but I did feel a bit bad about how much I cussed him for stinking, he seemed a bit hurt. He put his hand on my thigh. I am wearing leggings and his hand felt freezing cold but clammy on my leg. I can still feel it now. I told him that nothing sexual was going to happen tonight and that I was feeling tired and put off by his smell. He suggested having a shower, I said:

“The way you smell is not even the worst thing about this, it’s the lack of thought behind it. It is so basic, like how can you not know that you should be smelling fresh as fuck when you link up with someone. Seriously, you must know this, it’s a disrespect. The lack of thought and effort is what is putting me off more than the smell. The fact that you could not give a fuck about what you were presenting me with, especially when you can see that my home is always immaculate and that I am always super clean, you know that hygiene matters to me. It’s fucking rude. What would you do if I turned up at your house with a sour-smelling vagina and armpits?”

Him: I would tell you to take a shower

Me: That is a lie – you would not want to touch a woman who arrived at your house smelling of strongly BO

Then he sat there in silence for a bit before saying “Have you always had a fringe?” I told him I had and he said “Oh, I absolutely hate fringes, they remind me of the 1940s. It’s like you’re hiding behind something. You would look much better without a fringe” I knew that he was just trying to cuss me to make himself feel better, but he did get me thinking about my hairstyle. Prick. I needed him to urgently leave at this point. I told him that I was tired and he said “One more episode?” I told him that I’d rather not and he said that he was waiting for his brother to pick him up and he would be about 20 minutes. I could not hide my annoyance. I was icked to the highest degree. I didn’t say anything but he must have felt it because about 2 minutes later he said that he was just going to get an Uber instead. As I walked him to the door he said “If only I had washed my balls tonight” and I told him that it was actually a real shame that he hadn’t. I have now wasted a shave, but there is no way under any circumstances that I would allow someone who smells that frowsy to have their naked genitals anywhere near my body, or my furniture. That will definitely be the last time that I ever see Jamie again. Like I claimed to have learnt earlier – they are always exes for a reason and there is no point in going backwards but I have definitely learnt that now. The Universe absolutely did not want me to fuck that man tonight and I am happy as fuck that I didn’t. Mad timing though. Apologies for the fact that it massively delayed me posting this blog too – I had announced on Insta that it was coming and then it never came – I hope that story was worth waiting for.

Cut out toxic people

My Dad fucked me up, and he continues to fuck me up. My Dad is an amazing man, charismatic, funny, knowledgable, brave and strong. He is the definition of masculinity, he had to be, he was the eldest of three brother’s and he had to protect his siblings and his Mother from the severe violence and devastation that my Grandad obliterated his family with. My Dad’s Mother did not show him much love, I don’t think she was capable of it after the things she had been put through. My Dad went on to be a Firefighter and a fucking good one at that. He won awards for bravery and I grew up being so proud of my hero Dad. I idolised him, he was handsome and cool, and he protected me, but I never knew if he loved me. My Dad is a narcissist, a misogynist and a major fuckboy, having two daughters was like a punishment for him, he had multiple affairs and eventually ran off with my Mum’s best friend. He left when I was 7 and we only had irregular weekend contact with him after that. Having a narcissist Father is hard work, I have never been good enough, no matter what I do. He criticises me constantly, my driving, my clothes, my body, my looks, my career, my parenting, my home. He does not have a positive thing to say about anything I do, he never has, and he cannot accept being told that he is being rude or upsetting me. He gaslights me and blames me for everything that he does wrong. He undermines me in front of my son and an argument occurs nearly every time I see him, he is toxic and unhealthy for me. The thing is that he is a fantastic granddad and he loves my son like the Son he never had, my Son adores him and he idolises him like I did when I was a child and so I kept him around because I could not bear the thought of breaking my son’s heart by cutting him out. I know that he loves me deep down, but I also know that he sees me as an extension of my Mum and his Mum and I genuinely think that he hates me because of that.

My Dad is a gambling addict, and I think he is also heading fast into alcoholism too. He sends me abusive messages telling me I’m a cunt and saying that my Son is going to end up in prison if I don’t allow my Son to spend more time with him. I think that my Dad has post-traumatic stress disorder and he is rapidly becoming more and more unwell but he cannot see it. He has lost everything due to gambling but he still won’t admit he has a problem. He never used to be like this, he was always a narcissistic prick, but he was sorted and stable, he had a good job, money, he looked after himself – he is now a shadow of his former self, no money, no life – he spent Christmas Day alone. It broke my heart but we have had too many Christmases ruined by him and it’s not fair on our children or extended family.

So yeah, my Dad has been a big problem in my life for my whole life and he was becoming more problematic as time went on but I just kept going with it because he is my Dad and I couldn’t imagine life without him, but in September we had yet another row. My Son had been fishing for the first time and was super excited to tell my Dad all about it – but my Dad doesn’t like my Son being happy if he is not the one that caused it and so he shat all over my Son’s story and made him feel like a dick for being excited and that was the last straw for me. I did not want my Son growing up being treated the way that I had and so I have not seen or spoken to my Dad since September. I blocked him on everything because I did not want to hear from him. My Son adores him and so has been seeing him when my sister goes but that is becoming unsustainable because my Dad has been saying derogatory things about me to my Son. I unblocked him on Christmas Eve because my Son wanted to call him. Later that afternoon he sent me a text saying:

“You are your Mother’s Daughter. That’s what’s happened, she used you as a shield and now you are doing the same. Do you really want that for your child? don’t be a fool. You know I’m right. Don’t destroy it cuz you hate me through ya mum. I lvs ya an always will xxx”

The ten minutes later

“I’m a Grandad, you need me, and I’m here. Not for you, you can go fuck yourself. I’m here for him xxxx”

And that just confirmed for me that I had made the right decision to cut him out. I have a horrible fear that he is going to die and I am going to regret not having repaired things, but I have tried – he needs serious professional help and I cannot force him to get that, me and my Sister have done everything we can for him. It hurts a lot but also I have felt so much happier since not having to face him every week. I cannot spend the next few years of my life being emotionally abused and I cannot allow my Son to witness it – that is how abusive people are created. If his idol doesn’t respect me what hope do I have of being able to keep his respect? I love my Dad very much – the boy inside him, the brave wonderful man who has been through a lot and has never healed from it, my heart breaks for the man who he was supposed to be, the man who he lost to addiction and mental health, I miss the man who I idolised. I wish it was different and I have tried my best to make it so, but I am sure that I have done the right thing. It feels like I have, I really hope that I have.

You can’t please everyone and you don’t need to

In November I finally started my podcast click here to listen on Soundcloud or click here to listen on iTunes. Each week I have a different guest on and for my third podcast I recorded with a male artist who has a big following on Instagram. Just by coincidence, the day after I recorded my podcast with him he got exposed on a big militant feminist page for jumping into lots of women’s DMs and sexually objectifying them, asking for nudes etc. Just basically being a lecherous creep. The podcast was brilliant and I had advertised the fact that he was coming on as a guest on my instagram, so when all the shit came out I was pretty pissed off because it had cost me £150 to record the podcast and not putting it out would obviously cost me money. I expressed my conflicted feelings about this on my Instagram stories, I did not defend him, I just shared the parts that were causing me to feel fucked up about it. My true thoughts. I said that I was disgusted by what he had done, but also I could see how he had got himself there. This resulted in the same big page that exposed him coming for me. They went mad about me in their stories calling me a misogynist. People who had DM’d me had screenshot our conversations and sent them to this page and she was circling my words and saying things like I was a misogynist, holding up the patriarchy and that I was a pick me girl spreading a dangerous message to naive women. This led to a barrage of hate from her followers who call themselves feminists but who do not embody what feminism means to me. They started commenting on all of my pictures – tearing down my captions, they started DMing my followers telling them not to support me. They claimed to be angry with him for upsetting women in the DMs but their response was to DM me abuse and do their best to bring me down. Apparently I am less important than other women because I am a misogynist and a ‘pick me girl’ apparently my own views are not OK. I had to think like them and if I didn’t I should be shut down. It’s kinda mad because I had also been dealing with people calling me a man hater and who were saying that this is a man bashing page and that I am an evil feminist who only sees things from one side. I can’t win. But what that situation taught me is that I don’t need to win. I cannot please everybody and I cannot change anyone’s opinion. I have learnt that if I am going to make positive differences then I need to be softer in my arguments, this has really shown me that when someone comes at you with venom it just makes you defend your opposition even more fiercely and so if I am going to make any difference at all in making the world a better place then kindness, compassion and empathy is the way forward. I am not going to be bullied into changing my truth and I will never try to bully someone into accepting mine. We are all humans and we all deserve understanding. We all deserve to be forgiven for mistakes. We all deserve love. Negativity breeds negativity. Let’s be kinder to each other in 2019, even if we are not singing from the same hymn sheet 💓

Sex is supposed to be good

This year I really learnt that I have not been having good enough sex (or sex full stop to be honest). I had been having too much penis in vagina sex when that is not really what gets me off. I have faked orgasms to bring on theirs and I have sacrificed my own orgasms because they have rushed past ‘foreplay’ and forgotten to pay any attention to my clit. I say foreplay in quote marks because in my podcast with Dr Karen Gurney a psycho-sexologist she helped me to understand that if clitoral stimulation is what makes you cum then you are not actually having sex unless your clitoris is being stimulated. All the stuff we do before the penis enters the vagina is still sex, but because we are led to believe that penis in vag is the most important thing we believe that he is not fully satisfied unless his dick is in a wet hole and we often put their needs above our own. If you are one of the 20% of women who can come from a dick then this does not apply to you, but the rest of us have got to make sure that we are being vocal about our sexual needs and desires, about what feels good and what doesn’t. We should absolutely expect to have a good time every time and if we are not we must communicate about it. If he doesn’t know where your clit is then show him. Do not accept bad sex, you deserve to cum just as much as he does. I will never fake an orgasm again.

Seek to be peaceful not happy

I have been feeling a lot of anxiety this year. anxiety because I haven’t got a manager, anxiety because I’m starting to have to meet people when I do podcasts, anxiety about not having a regular income, anxiety about not writing my book fast enough, and sometimes anxiety for no apparent reason whatsoever. I have been trying my best to stay peaceful, calm and focused. Cutting my Dad out was part of that. I have also been trying to give less fucks about everything that doesn’t really matter. Like my car has a big dent in it that needs to be repaired and it has been giving me anxiety, but I have let it go because it doesn’t really matter, same with my glass shower door that my cleaner smashed and has not offered to pay for. I’m just having showers at a different angle for now, and trying not to stress about it. I used to think that the goal was happiness, that no matter what was going on I had to look for the joy in it and force myself to get happy, but I feel differently now. Now I feel like you can’t possibly be happy all the time, if you were then you would not experience the joy of proper happiness. You have to know sadness to appreciate happiness. You are not supposed to be overjoyed whilst doing a poo, or shaving your legs. You can’t always be happy and you don’t need to be. You can’t always be peaceful, but it’s a lot easier to achieve than happiness. Seek to have healthy emotional well-being. Look after yourself and your health, look after the attachments you have with others, take care of your surroundings, your home, be slower, stay away from people and situations that disturb your peace, meditate, take exercise, walk more, use your phone less, be spiritual, read, listen to self-help podcasts and Youtube videos, stay on a path of self-improvement, but accept that you will stray off that path sometimes and that that’s OK, as long as you jump back on quickly after you fall off.

And so that it is, another year done. Thank you for changing my life – there is no way that I could have left my job and started to do what I love if it had not been from the support that I get from you. By reading my blogs, listening to my podcasts, getting involved with the Insta lives, and generally interacting with me on my page you enable me to get noticed by brands that might actually want to give me money and by publishers who might want to help with my book. This is all nothing without you. Especially because it can be proper hard work, laying my life out on the line no holds barred and at times, like described above with the feminist backlash, it can get quite hard. You have absolutely no idea how much of a difference it makes when I receive messages of love and support from you. It inspires me to keep going. You motivate me massively and I cannot thank you enough. The love is real and I hope to keep supporting you and building this community of awesome women (and some men) in 2019. I’m aiming for big things and I’m taking you with me. Thank you for being a part of my 2018. Here’s to a spectacularly buff 2019 for us all!

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