Shira B. Katz makes her triumphant return with a considerable discussion about impermanence and how the changes in her and both Cooper's relationships statuses have affected their views on non-monogamy and their own sexuality, and how… that is ok.
We also worked some Law and Order, Doctor Who, and “cream” as a verb into the discussion. Check it out!
Podcast: Download (Duration: 1:07:46 — 43.3MB)
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Love you podcast.
What you share, the type of challenges you went through is way far in the future for me. I am out of 5-yr monogamy relationship, lost in life purpose and focus, single for the last year, just realized that I am not very “dateable”, addicted to porn and close to broke. I am 27, and I feel like total failure. It will take me at least 2-4 years to get to where you are, guys, through constant training, Pick-up-Artists community, trial and fails with girls-not-ready-for-lifestyle and so on… You are dealing with the type of challenges, that I can only dream of.
Yet, I think I will only be happy, if by girl will be bisexual and into open-relationship.
My question is: I want to learn how to be around those girls and boys, how to become the kind of guy, who naturally attracts this type of girls?
Warning this is a bit ranty….. First thank you Ginger for echo exactly how I felt hearing Shira saying she felt like she “f-ed” up and let down the community. I was personal witness to pain the Shira and Cooper were carrying at Catalyst East, even at the height of the fun, and I think they have been damned huge troopers talking about any of this “on air”. That they have shared so much should be considered a gift to the rest of us and every part of my momma tiger defender/warrior being is flared up right now to hear people are giving them guff about this. The elegant and respectful way both of them have spoken about their ex-partners and the way their partnerships dissolved to me is modeling behavior that ALL relationship configurations should take serious note from. Having had to go through my own non-monogamy marital blow up “publically” a few years ago, I can tell you, its hard enough to do the work, let alone while everyone is watching you and critiquing your every “wrong move”. Fuck that and fuck them. I know you guys put it out there, but that doesn’t give people license to kick you when you’re down. Just know that, when people react like that, it tells me that they have monsters in their closets that they handled very very badly and because your positive examples remind them of their fuck up, they have to shit all over you. So “haters” look to your own backyard I say.
Also Shira, it hurt my heart to hear you say repeatedly that you “fucked up” and “failed” even with your quantifying statements! Maybe you feel like you could have done something better, or differently, but even had you done it text book perfectly (which of course is subjective and therefore impossible) you STILL wouldn’t think it was “alright” because pain happened, all the way around, and you wish it hadn’t. That’s not you fucking up, that’s you taking all the responsibility, which isnt yours alone to bear. No matter what you did, Gavin did, the Transient or anyone else did that brought you all here, is what it is, no take backs. So now its about letting go of the pain, and letting EACH OTHER let it go, so you can all step back into the light and reconnect to life and the things that make you happy again.
Re Impermanence – why can’t we just say a relationship ENDS and not FAILS? Why not look at relationships as we would any kind of self-improvement, self-awareness experience we embark on – like workshops, or retreat weekends, even spiritual homes. Then when it ends, though we will miss the person who taught us, the friends we met, and the shared experiences, we could value what we learned, how we changed and be PROUD OF IT, instead of beating ourselves up with would have, could have, should haves. Kind of like Cooper’s vacation analogy. You can look back then at the “awesome“, minimizing the not so great. We don’t have to go in expecting that all relationships we have will end, but if we went into our relationships with the mutual agreement that you’re only going to continue the relationship you have if everyone in it feel balanced, content and thrives – then when it starts to feel unbalanced and you can’t rebalance, or don’t want to even maybe, its not this huge trauma.
I agree with Cooper that success is recognizing when the relationship needs to end and actually doing it. The only thing I view as “failure” regarding a relationship is when the participants hang on too long, not wanting to hear the signs, or see the signs, that it’s time to part ways, and so what they built in love and respect becomes a bitter explosion of pain and hate. Which again, wouldn’t happen if we stopped seeing the end as a “failure” to begin with. It’s the weight of society’s happily ever after that lures people into believing that romantic relationships have to last longer, and do better, than any other relationship in our lives. How many friends do we part ways with and there is no huge blowup, crazy drama about it, even heart tied best friendships? We see those people years later and it’s still all good, and part again no problem. How many family members does that happen with? Yet romantic relationships, even ones where there is no shared property, shared kids etc, have to end in emotional earthquakes? Its ridiculous.
BTW –We Pagans, don’t cringe Cooper, DO often have Handparting ceremonies. It’s a way to release the oaths you made to your partner, important psychologically BTW, and then publically proclaim how you both intend to move forward with respect and balance. Its kind of a way to show the community who supported your partnership, how you intend to treat each other, want others to treat you, and gives you a like solid point in time to move forward. So a partner might say something like “As we end our partnership, I will respect the space you need to rebalance, and strive to not invade your peace” etc. or “I will endeavor to not disrespect you, or what we had, and not allow others to do so either” etc. They are actually pretty moving, and it lets people end the relationship on a note of remembering what they loved about each other and want to honor, and not walk away with anger and ill will.
In general just know that you’ve got way more supporters than haters out here, who are proud to know you, and proud to have your voices represent the rest of us!!!
Maybe the ‘glee’ you detect in Facebook comments about your individual ‘impermanences’ isn’t so much aimed at damning the concept of nonmonogamy but a reaction to Cooper’s & Shira’s (past?) holier-than-thou, air of superiority, aren’t-the-vanillas-so-unenlightened attitude?
Be honest, you have the same reaction/feeling when some gay-bashing politician gets caught adopting a “wide stance”, right?
I’m not going to deny there may be a little bit of schadenfreude in the comments knocking Shira and Cooper for their relationships ending… but they are missing the point.
We’ve all gotten a little holier than thou air of superiority before; so does everyone. “I live a more holy life than them so I’m better than them.” It takes time and perspective to get rid of that, and honestly… shit’s so GOOD in non-monogamy at its best; combine that with the newness, the variety, the fact that it’s taboo, it all combines to make it intoxicating.
So, a little temporary loss of perspective, or… dare I say, smugness happens.
It’s both completely outclassed by the amount of persecution, hate, and outright discussed shown by the holier than thou monogamous folk.
But… it doesn’t excuse it. We’ve all grown past it and we accept people who are built to be monogamous or people who have chosen to; it’s their life, if they’re happy then it’s good all around. Non-monogamy isn’t the solution to everyone’s life problems, but it can be the way your life was meant to be lived.