(from 15 July 2015:)
What to do? I should speak up.
I’ve got so much in my head right now. It’s almost obscene.
A Pathological Liar : A Story and a Situation
-As a member of the kink community, I see certain situations happening a lot. These situations lead to discussion that often concerns consent and manipulation, and whether or not members of the community have a responsibility to the community to broadcast the details of those situations wherein people have been manipulated or victimized by others in the community. If a person has been manipulated by another member of the community, does that victim have a duty towards the community for reasons of safety, to warn others? This is an endless debate and I have witnessed over and over these explosively emotional situations that ensue when someone was mistreated, shamed, manipulated or used by another and it all becomes a witch hunt. Case in point, I recently watched a rather popular member of the kink community leave the community of his own volition in an effort to protect himself from being outed by others for being a pathological liar. He was about to be found out, so he decided to come clean pre-emptively before others could expose his lies. So he admitted that he was a pathological liar, and he expected to be shunned and shamed. Instead, the community response of most members was to refrain from responding to him at all. Certainly, many who knew him were shocked and it became a drama unto itself – but otherwise, he left in relatively embarrassed silence. Most in the community expect that he will never be heard from again, and so it was assumed that the community will carry on, and anyone whose life he touched might now breathe a sigh of relief. Most people hoped that with his leaving that the worst part was over. Because he left quietly, it was assumed that no more lives could be damaged, no one else could be manipulated anymore. As I said, as a member of several communities –both online and offline – that resolution is a common hope.
But I cannot help pondering that question:
Does the victim of a manipulative person have a responsibility to their community to speak up? Some would say yes. Some would say no. Generally speaking, it is often assumed that no one would want a manipulator in their midst, and yet it would be difficult to find a community that has never had one.
There are those who would hide behind their self-imposed positions in the community. There are those who would twist the structure or the mission statement or even the rules of their group to advance their own needs. And in the case of religious community, there are still others who would hide behind the voice of the Gods to advance their personal agendas. So whether or not someone recognizes manipulation in the community, or whether or not an individual is being manipulated by another in the community, where does the responsibility rest?
I want to talk about this – I want to tell you about a particularly well-known [ETA: now former] Lokean godspouse – who manipulated me -but I don’t know how.
(Update, 15 July 2016 – edited to add: Y’know, it’s not that I didn’t know how: it was that I was afraid to stand up for myself, back then. I was afraid of what people would think of me. And even worse, since this person and I both live in the same state, and we actually share the same first name, I was afraid that others who didn’t know me would conflate me with her.)
I am horrified to realize something about myself in regards to one of my blog-followers on WP.
This is an acquaintance who has recently been ‘claimed’ by Loki. Not surprisingly, her blog concerns her latest adventures which are rife with sickeningly sweet discussions of an overabundance of NRE.
I have discovered that she is friends with (this Local Other Lokean who shares my name [LOL].)
Any day now, I wonder if and when she will suddenly receive a nudge that she *should* leave her mortal partner in deference to ‘Loki’s wishes.’
I have known so many others – who had been told this (by LOL) at one time or another – that Loki is nudging things in that direction.
It would seem to be a rather common experience, and it would seem many are familiar with that particular story.
I mean, LOL was by no means the only one who subscribed to the belief that if Loki doesn’t like your boyfriend/lover/husband, He will let you know.
But I remember when I had first been told by LOL that Loki wanted to nudge a certain mortal relationship of mine out the door in late 2012.
(And then again, concerning my marriage of 20 years…in mid-2013.)
So, as you might imagine, just when I thought that I was finished with a relationship overhaul, there’s another problematic relationship that needs tweaking, and if I refuse to overhaul, it … it goes.
Or does it?
Who do you believe?
Who will you listen to
Who will it be?
It’s high time that you decide
In your own mind…
-Natalie Merchant, Life is Sweet
It’s all a matter of personal discernment, isn’t it?
And suddenly I am forced to look at the source.
Whom did I believe?
Whom did I listen to?
I listened to LOL, actually…thinking that I was listening to Loki.
I also listened to another of LOL’s close, trusted friends, P – who also claimed to know Loki and who also claimed to routinely channel Loki.
Though LOL’s and P’s readings would often corroborate each other, this fact strengthened my belief, rather than raising the red flags that this situation normally would have for me.
I wanted so much to believe, you know.
I wanted to believe that the Gods could talk to us directly.
And I considered myself headblind.
So I trusted LOL and I trusted P, since P identified herself as a natural medium with strong psychic gifts, whose psychic readings were ‘eerily accurate,’ as I’d been told by several other members of the online community group of which we were all members.
We were all part of the same kindred.
Both LOL and P claimed to have my best interests at heart.
Even aside of the ‘channelings,’ P and I had spent months chatting and interacting online, on Skype and Google hangouts, and in private messaging.
I’d even met P in person when P came to see LOL in April of 2013.
In short, it’s a rather clichéd story: I thought that LOL and P were my friends. **
So you may imagine that there were several conflicting directives for me – do I listen to what I wanted to believe was LOL’s discernment of Loki – or do I listen to my own discernment?
Well, it took me a long time to figure it out for myself.
And, as a result, in the meantime, I made many poor choices based upon my avoidance and refusal to take up the reins of my own life. I fell into the trap of allowing myself to make decisions and choices based upon the validity of others’ truth rather than trusting my own truth.
I trusted that LOL and P wouldn’t mislead me. I should have trusted myself.
So…what was the message?
Trust your own discernment.
A Lesson on Community Dynamics
I think about what another BNP and Lokean [D] had said to me a little over 2 years ago concerning the ‘Loki-wives’ community dynamic.’
And surprisingly, D warned me specifically about LOL by name.
And that should have been another red flag…that I should have listened to. But I did not.
But I wish that I could talk to D and I would tell him,
‘Hey, you were right. I only wish that I’d listened to you then – but then again – perhaps I wouldn’t know now what I didn’t know then.’
But if I had listened – if I had grasped what he was telling me – I wouldn’t have learned the lesson that I needed to learn.
But I mean, I am a Lokean after all, and if there’s any way I learn, it’s the hard way.
I know that I don’t owe D anything except a thank you, but I am grateful to him beyond belief.
But sometimes one learns best by making mistakes.
See the Pattern?
I tried to write my angry whiskey bravery entry concerning patterns of manipulation but I didn’t post it widely.
My husband, V was supportive and encouraging, however.
The same person whom Loki supposedly didn’t like. The same husband that I was informed that I should leave by Loki Himself.
But it was not until almost a year later that I realized. I made choices that were based upon my trust in someone elses’s discernment rather than trusting my own discernment.
And then, last night I had a dream – two dreams actually – and He definitely appeared in both of them.
The first one took place at the beach. It began in the midst of a horrible event:
There I was, face up looking up blearily at the pale sky, feeling exhausted and disoriented.
Someone off to my left was informing me that I had almost drowned.
Evidently, I was being informed, I had been attempting to swim in the ocean but my skills were weak, so the strength of the ocean had become too much for me. (What an apt metaphor.)
My chest ached, likely from having coughed up so much water.
I looked over to my left, to see who had rescued me.
Loki was crouched down in the sand beside me as I lay there gasping and exhausted, and He was reprimanding me for allowing myself to drown.
He told me that He had sat by me for over two years, listening to me whining about a particularly static personal situation and that He was now there to inform me that the time of my whining was officially over.
He demanded that I stop trying to drown and actually learn to swim.
He was supportive, but in a sly, harsh way. He reminded me that I still haven’t done what I intended to do.
I know what that is.
And then the second dream, I was over LOL’s house, attending a gathering of the local Lokean ‘kindred.’
Of course I had been invited – and I should have felt welcome -but I was there and I was feeling rather awkward. I had just arrived at LOL’s house, with my arms full of groceries and alcohol. Feeling socially anxious, I remember inwardly cringing over the possibility that I felt the need to bring all the food and booze as compensation for my awkwardness. The possibility that I could engage the process of cooking and drinking –rather than socializing with others – suddenly seemed like nothing more than one of my typical avoidance maneuvers. As well, it suddenly became obvious to me that there was a part of me that hoped that nothing else would be required of me. Of course that was true; I would hide in LOL’s kitchen as I always did, grateful to have the distractions of cooking food and serving food. Didn’t I always hide in the kitchen?
I was both surprised and horrified to realize this, and I suddenly wanted nothing more than to go home.
I didn’t want to be there anymore.
But I don’t drive, so I began stressing over how I could get a ride home.
I tried calling my husband, V.
I tried calling on my older kid, N.
Then the doorbell rang. When I opened the door, there was a delivery-person on LOL’s front step, holding a massive bouquet of flowers. The bouquet was so large that I couldn’t see delivery-person’s face, until the delivery person peered around it.
I shouldn’t have surprised that it was Loki (and it was obvious, as He was using one of the more common mundane faces that He uses in my dreams) and He said:
Hey. I see that you are still not doing what you promised Me.
Stand up. Stand the fuck up, and stop being afraid.
What have I told you?
Do what you promised Me. Do something.
** In retrospect, I have come to realize that LOL and P were something else.
LOL and P were two people who were simply those who – whether they are aware of it or not – allowed their filter to color their channeling of Loki.
In short, LOL and P were a harsh lesson in discernment for me.
But I am here to tell you today – 1 August 2016 – that I allowed LOL to manipulate me.
As well, concerning their close association, I’d even allowed P to manipulate me in LOL’s stead, as well.
So, as a result, I don’t think that I could support anyone else going through what I feel was a pattern of grooming and manipulation that began in late 2012 and ended in November 2015.
But perhaps, that’s a story for another day.