Tonight, in my Creative Writing class, I read out loud (while the class members read along with their own copies, as is standard) a very raw, intense, R to NC-17 rated story written by me from my ex’s perspective. It was titled, “PUSSY.” Uncomfortable? Tweet our president.
I have been working through my emotions in a number of healthy ways, but this, it turned out, was by far the healthiest. I put myself into his shoes and wrote how I would have seen me from his eyes.
My classmates did not and still do not know that my piece was about me or my relationship, except for one classmate who I know from last semester (and I am SO THRILLED he is taking the same class again with me!!!!!), and my Professor who was also my Professor last semester, (both of whom I had already divulged my “secret” to).
I was not easy on myself, and I tried to write from his perspective honestly and organically. And I really tried to channel what I would have felt, thought, and done, if I were in his position.
When I got home I read the comments my fellow classmates wrote on the pieces I had passed out. This part is extremely difficult. I felt encouraged by their comments in class, but written comments are more revealing and can be harsh. And some were.
The reaction of the class was, as I laughed with my Professor after class in the parking lot, NOT “what the fuck?,” which encouraged me to continue my quest for an honest story.
And the written comments are:
- Am I supposed to be sympathetic to this guy?
- I am repulsed by his behavior. How could anyone see him as a sympathetic character?
- Could she really cook?
- This seems too tender for him to say.
- Double entendre? Which one of them is the pussy?
- Are we supposed to like this person?
- Well, I guess that’s nice.
- Why? Is she violent?
- Oh my God, get counseling, you guys!
- How about a flashback to when they first met? Early days of dating?
- Is she smart? Do you want us to like her? If so, give use something more to go on.
- She still seems pretty with it.
- Okay. So. I’m supposed to despise the main character/narrator, right? But the woman is pretty pathetic. I don’t like her either. I want to like someone. Maybe the main character is really good at his job? Maybe she’s a great cook sometimes? Give me something to like about them!
- Was it really love or just lust?
- Hard to tell if he really cares about her.
- What’s their relationship like not here?
- Says he loves these women but is abusive
- Using her to masterbate.
- Did he ever realize he just didn’t care about her?
The following comments, in full disclosure, come from the two men who know this is a true story about my life.
- Nice description of the relationship between them
- I tend to think she is the one handling their relationship and I like it
- Another very nice description
- The power I was expecting is present in every line. Does he really love her? I get a feeling he does. I loved it. Maybe a little more of “feelings” between them would help? <—- (I wish it had, my friend.)
- Boy — I REALLY dislike him just from this one moment [first full paragraph on page one] — graphic — but it gives you an honest portrait of a person who thinks this way.
- The way he thinks is scary —
- How does this make her sleepy — ? Maybe “content” — satisfied — and with that, she zones out —
- Wow — what a major ASSHOLE!
Disclaimer: The result is what I’ve always known…I’m not perfect. But I deserve better than him. And he deserves different than me.
And if he was an asshole in our relationship, I was at least part of the reason.