Revenge of the Month for Loki (RMfL) Post II: Not a Godspouse, I.

In the last few months, I’ve stirred up some dust for poking at Loki’s mortal wives – even though I count some of their number as my nearest and dearest friends. I encouraged readers to write about their own relationships with Him, especially if these relationships were not spousal.

Time to put my money in my flapping maw, I guess.

One of the biggest misgivings I had about answering Loki’s call – even though I had already surrendered to Him as His servant – was that I was not happy about His claim of being my “father”.

As a Christian apostate, I had spent too many years of my life desperately trying to relate to God as a cosmic Daddy. It never worked for me, and as I got more involved in my particular flavor of Protestant faith (United Methodist), I was lucky to find others who weren’t so quick to assume God-the-Masculine. It was just becoming the new vogue to refer to God as either “She”, or gender neutral words. This was much more in line with how I experienced God, and that feeling grew moreso in my first forays into Paganism, at the hands of Dianic Wicca, a particular kind of Wicca that is Goddess-centric (to the exclusion of a male “God” at all, or worship/mention of male deity) and wouldn’t even let men into their rituals. (Or Trans* Women either, let’s be honest.)

So just as I was getting more comfortable in my relationship to the Holy One(s), a Male Deity showed up and claimed to be my father. And not just in some metaphorical, archetypal way either – He actually detailed for me the scene at my conception, to prove He had been present, even if my (human) parents knew nothing about it. He claimed to have molded me in the womb, to be what I am today, so as to be a better shaman/spirit worker for Him.

Part of this relationship with Him was specifically engineered to help me overcome the deep wounds I had about my human father. He was a very troubled soul, nearly friendless throughout my lifetime, wrought with depression and other severe mental illnesses, as well as the results of a horrific childhood. I tried for years to come to better terms with him, especially as I became an adult and saw him for the sad man of circumstance and bad choices he really was, rather than the abusive tyrant he had been in my youth. Not that I explain away or mean to make excuses for the fucked up things he did to me and my siblings (and my mother too), but I understand much more where those dysfunctions came from. When I first learned of his death in 2007, I honestly couldn’t tell if I was sad or glad he was gone. So ambivalent my family and what little friends he had were, I was the only one brave enough to give a eulogy at his funeral, and even then I made sure to make it known that I wasn’t going to ignore or pretend that he hadn’t been an asshole to a lot of people in his day.

It’s obvious, then, why I never really felt God as a reflection of my father, which was really the only “father figure” I ever had – the only other male who served as a role model in my youth was a very fey gay man, go figure – because I could not separate the idea of my father as the self-proclaimed sovereign of my childhood household and this supposedly benevolent Being who not only never saved me from the terrors of abuse as a child, no matter how much I prayed, but who saw fit to give me a deep desire for spiritual service combined with a strong sexual attraction for gay men and lesbians. Either way you sliced it, the idea of a Holy Male (or wholly Male) never really felt right to me.

But there Loki was, not only claiming to have a hand (so to speak) in my actual conception, but now wanted me to worship Him as a child does their Father. I wasn’t having any of it.

But Loki, in his infinite patience, bore out all of my fighting and rejecting and trying to reframe our relationship in any other matter but this, until finally I came to accept my lot. And honestly, it’s more that I can totally see myself as not unlike His brood via Angrboda – a monster, not quite human, but of this world nonetheless. And this is why, friends, that I get really fucking pissed off when I call myself “monster” and you feel bound to assure me I am not. I do not see this as a bad thing, nor really a good one either, but just a thing, like being a redhead. In some ways, I see it not unlike many of the other labels I have come to accept for myself, many of them having once been epithets but now reclaimed: queer, trans, crip, fat, weirdo, geek, etc.

Then, of course, just as I started to feel comfortable with my lot, I found Loki’s mortal wives. Some of them are wonderfully nice people, fellow Lokeans that I love dearly. But just as many told me horrible things, like “If Loki really loved you, He’s marry you” or “If you’re Loki’s child, and I’m His wife, that must make me your mother-in-law in some way”, or “Why would someone *choose* to be a monster like Fenris, who is an enemy to the Aesir?” and so on. It broke the shaky confidence I had gained. I cried for months, through which Loki stayed mostly distant, waiting out the temper tantrum for what it was. I felt ugly, abandoned, unworthy, unloved, because He did not choose me for a wife, but instead a child. It made me feel condenscended to (from both the mortal lot as well as He), like I was fated to always be seated at the kid’s table, that no one would take me seriously as either a spirit worker or Lokean should I make my relationship with Him known.

(Maybe now you can see why I get so fucking angry when Lokeans come to me having been told similar things – the gas over Loki only really loving His wives being among them – because not only does it fucking hurt, not only is it not even remotely true, but because I’ve known more than one who have turned from Loki completely, feeling that if He did not want them for a spouse, they would find a different God who would take them as such.)

Part of my journey with Loki is to learn about being a non-asshole Father, but even more deeply as I started my transition, how to be a non-asshole man. Unfortunately, as many formerly abused children do, I have dated some pretty fucked up individuals in my day, hoping to find some sort of Daddy replacement, only to get wounded all over again. It has been difficult for me to figure out what kind of man I am, or want to be, because there aren’t many role models I’ve had access to in an intimate enough manner (not meaning “fucking”, but as in “understanding all aspects of them”) that have panned out. I think my picker has gotten better as I grow older, but it still needs some WD-40 from time to time.

It has also been about being the underdog, the minority voice fighting to be heard, to be respected. In the past few years, some have told me they see me as an Elder, and knowing how hard I’ve had to fight to be taken seriously (both in general and as a Lokean), I find a deep honor in that. I don’t know if I’m ready to take on that mantel quite yet, so for now I’m happy to be a Pope (which I will write about soon).

So that is my relationship to Loki, as well as I can tell it today. He is my Dad, and His blood runs through my veins as surely as my mortal parents do. I have learned to see my human father as a three dimensional human being, rather than just “the bad guy”, and I have learned to cultivate the aspects of masculinity that suit me, and to remember not to emulate the aspects that don’t, even if I might pass more as a man if I did.

Review: The RodeoH Harness

Yes, this blog is also about sex, remember? I’ve said what I had to say about that other subject.

Some of the images below are probably NSFW.

It started with an excited text from my boyfriend. He had seen a specialized version of the RodeoH harness on some porn site, with “Queer Porn Star” on the butt. (I think it was on Queer Porn Tv, but I can’t seem to bring up their store page right now.) I was immediately grabbed by the concept of a strap-on harness that didn’t have straps and buckles, especially since my body is shaped in such a way where most of those kind of harnesses don’t lay right. (I do own the Joque Spare Parts harness, which I’ve modified a bit for my use, and it is also a great harness especially for us chubbier folk.)

So I went to the RodeoH website, and fell in love. I don’t know why I haven’t seen this idea in practical use before: I’ve seen latex or rubber panty-or-jock style harness, but they never sit right unless you have the perfectly flat belly (and really, who does?) and I don’t know about you, but both of those materials makes me sweat when I’m…uh…being active. RodeoH, on the other hand, makes theirs with a combination of mostly cotton, with just enough spandex to give it stretch. I was sad to see that their largest size was a few inches shy of Del-hips, but in a fit of inspiration I decided to write the company and ask them if they were planning on making larger sizes.

Lo and behold, I got much, much more than I bargained for. I got a response the very next day from the owner of the company. They offered to send me a pair of their biggest size boxer-style harness – the one I was most interested in – and said that if they didn’t have enough give, they would be interested in making a larger pair! They wanted me to test drive these, since they didn’t have many larger-sized testers and wanted to know how they worked on larger size people.

These are the ones I recieved.

These are the ones I recieved.

I was totally excited by the time they arrived in the mail. They come in a little pouch, about the size of a sock, which makes them very easy to pack, either in a suitcase or in a “overnight bag” with just your equipment, your harness, and some condoms. I wasn’t able to try them on immediately since I was (unfortunately) in the hospital at the time, but it made both my boyfriend and I build excitement over when I was going to try them on. (Oh, he tried hard to lobby for him to try them on first, because he secretly really wants a pair of his own.) But alas, a time to try them out with him hasn’t manifested yet, but it will very soon.

Go ahead and do a google search on 'RodeoH Harness" if you have time on your hands.

Go ahead and do a google search on ‘RodeoH Harness” if you have some…free time on your hands.

However, I did throw them in my bag when I went to FetFestCon in the Poconos. I wasn’t sure if I was going to have any use for them, but like a now-accepted gay Boy Scout, I like to be prepared (and hopeful). My curiosity got the better of me, and I decided to try packing with them while I cruised the Playspace one night.

I was super pleased to learn that although they list the size as being 52-55, they fit me (who is a few inches larger than that) just fine. In fact, some boxer-briefs like to creep up my ass when I first put them on, and these, pleasantly, did not. I used the dildo I call “my cock”, an eight inch realistic looking prosthetic. The O ring is stretchy, and the three inches of girth on my cock didn’t have any problem slipping in. I would say this harness could take most standard-sized cocks; I could stretch it far enough to get my hand and wrist in, so I’d say even size queens would approve. If you’re using a smaller extension, like for anal play, I would estimate that the O is about two inches wide; any smaller and you can easily cut a hole in a slip of foam rubber or other flexible-but-sturdy material and slip that into the pocket where the base of the dildo goes.

These are the boyshort version. They're comfortable and inconspicuous enough to wear them like underwear, and then excuse yourself to slip in the cock when the time is right!

These are the boyshort version. They’re comfortable and inconspicuous enough to wear them like underwear, and then excuse yourself to slip in the cock when the time is right!

There’s only a thin layer of cotton between you and your cock, so if you’re a rough fuck, you might want to slip some extra padding in to keep from bruising. But what’s nice about the contact is, it’s great for those who position the base in such a way where they’re getting some sort of stimulation from it, and you’re more in tune with what’s going on down there (whereas other harnesses that overpad the contact make it feel like you’re just pushing against a tiny pillow, rather than really feeling the cock move.)

Other than having to adjust several times to keep from tenting too obviously (there’s no easy way to tuck in this harness if you’re planning to pack-on-the-go), I wore it for most of the night and it was super comfortable. Even while doing some light punching/kicking, it didn’t slip out of place or move in any awkward way. With other harnesses, especially when I pack before doing SM, I find I frequently have to stop and adjust the straps or pull it up, if I’m moving around a lot. I also loved that it made my cock feel more natural, a real extension of me, because of the thin layer; I could feel when my cock moved in my pants, and it was a huge turn on.

What I also love about this harness is that you can play with positioning. Most traditional harnesses absolutely must sit on the mons pubis or it won’t fit right. For me, it’s hard to fuck like that, since, well, it’s a little further south due to having a belly. It’s hard for me to fuck like that without reaching down and keeping one hand on the cock, and really if I’m going to do that I might as well take the fucking thing off and just push it in*. With the RodeoH, you can pull or push the cock around on your body until it’s in the most comfortable place for you to fuck from. For those of us with differently shaped bodies, that’s a huge bonus.

As a bit of a slut, I also love that it is totally machine washable. It’s just no fun to spend the next morning desperately wiping down a leather or rubber harness, and over time they start to break down if you don’t care for them correctly (aka, not just letting them sit around dirty until the next time you have a promising date.) I came home from the event, threw them in the machine, and in an hour they were ready to go again.

I am in love with this harness, and not just because they sent me a free sample. Really, this is now my go-to for any kind of play where I need my prosthetic, including packing. And I can honestly say that their largest size can actually stretch another 4-6 inches if you so need; for any buyer, I would suggest getting a size that’s actually an inch or two smaller than your actual waist or hip size (depending on what style you buy), so you get a good, tight fit and less slippage during vigorous enjoyment.

Their website, again, is here. I haven’t tried their panty versions, but if someone else has, please by all means add your thoughts to the comments.

*I did recently buy a hand-harness that’s made by Spare Parts (although it’s not on their website that I can see). It’s great for those who want to fuck for long periods of time but want something with more contact than just holding the base of the cock. There’s also removable mini-bullet vibes above and below the cock for a little clitoral/perineum pleasure. I’m definitely trotting this one out when I teach my Accessible Kink class, as it’s great for those who like using their hands instead of their hips.

And it looks kinda badass, too.

And it looks kinda badass, too.

International Day of Transgender Visibility: How Being Transgender Is and Is Not The Most Important Thing You Can Know About Me

I apologize if this essay seems a little off the cuff; ironically, I just learned that March 31st is the International Day of Transgender Visibility, and I felt compelled to write a little something about it, because I think it’s a really good thing to celebrate and educate about.

First of all, if it hasn’t been made abundantly clear: I am transgender.

For me, this means I was born with a vulva, vagina, ovaries and a uterus, and was thusly raised with the concept that I was female; meanwhile, I struggled internally with this “diagnosis” until I later realized that biology is not destiny. The reason many transgender activists have added the “*” to the shorthand “trans*” is because there are many ways the prefix trans (which means “to cross over”) is used by gender variant people: transsexual, transgressive, transcendent, etc. I think these apply to me in one way or another. Indulge me as I share a bit of my gender journey with you. Get a cup of tea, coffee, or a hot toddy (which sounds lovely on this brisk rainy evening) and see this in the context of my “story”. Although these things are true, they are also woven together specifically to make a point.

I often talk about that my mother was not only intuitively convinced that I was male while she was pregnant, but the doctors did some sort of test (she doesn’t remember, and it was a long time ago) to tell her I was male. They had picked out a male name (Sean, which I would have totally loved as a name regardless, but they ended up giving it to my younger brother) and had done the sorts of things you do when expecting a boy. When I was born, it was such a surprise for my parents that my “girl name” was chosen during the first few days of my life, as they poured over baby name books and made lists of names they liked. My first and middle names, including the middle name I kept when I legally changed my name to Del, were the only two they both had on their lists. So even from the moment of birth, the fact that I was female was somewhat of a surprise to the world. I have been strongly tempted, in the last few years, to pursue this medically; to get my DNA tested to see if I am Intersex in some way. I have had doctors posit this as an explanation to some of my issues with menstruation and pregnancy, which is not a typical diagnosis to discuss with a patient, so I’ve done a significant amount of research about Intersex conditions, and sometimes I’ve told people I am Intersex. My mother goes back and forth between telling me I am, and telling me there’s no way I am, so I don’t know if this “test” had told her anything more specific about my gender. I seem to have a functional female reproductive system, as I’ve been pregnant twice, but that’s not necessarily an indication of not being Intersex.

It is important to note that being Intersex does not preclude being trans*. In fact, many Intersex children have their genitals mutilated (because “making a hole is easier than making a pole”) and raised female; only to be tormented with feelings they were raised the wrong gender, and transitioning as adults. There are also cases of Intersex children being raised male, only to transition to female as adults. In my heart, I really wish we could just accept that Intersexuality happens as often as 1 in 100 births, and stop forcing parents and children to choose blue or pink when obviously nature is creating us in many more than two, easily distinguishable, somehow completely opposite, genders. I’m even hesitant to support raising a genitally disambiguous child (that is, one who is born with complete and intact “female” or “male” genitalia) as though their gender is a predetermined, set thing. As more and more parents are accepting their children’s self-determined gender identity, and there are even medical doctors and facilities treating trans* kids with both puberty-blocking medications, as well as administering hormones of the child’s preferred gender so they go through the “right” puberty instead. I just mention my own experiences with both having shades of intimations that I may be Intersex, as well as my own intuitions, as part of my gender journey.

Regardless, I was raised and socialized female. This means that when I showed any interest or aptitude in things that our culture deigns to be “for boys”, my parents diligently reprogrammed me to like “girl things”. I have a strong memory of stealing my brother’s football, as he was barely a toddler and had no interest in the thing, and taking it down the block to play with the neighborhood boys. One of my parents seized it, wrote my brother’s name on it in big letters, and the next time I “borrowed” it I was punished.

Likewise, I was inundated with “girl things”. My mother decided I should be a child model/actress, and that world was very invested in hyper feminization; girls had to be “girly girls”. So my hair was kept in pigtails and I was subjected to a lot of dresses and skirts, which I very much hated and never felt comfortable in.

Even with all this, I never really had the coherent and complete thought that “I was born in the wrong body” or that “I should have been born a boy”. More, I was very confused and depressed that there were these things I wanted to do, be, and wear that were off limits for a reason I couldn’t understand. I have never, nor do I really even now, understand why we gender our children’s experience so emphatically. I once bought a newborn female-sexed child a small flannel shirt and courteroy pants, specifically because I knew their mother was going to be swamped in pink and frills. She balked at first, thinking I had made a mistake. Later, she wrote me to tell me it was her child’s favorite outfit.

As I grew older, the conflict was intensified when I realized that my childhood daydreams of having a wife and raising children wasn’t biologically or socially acceptable. As the sexualization of “girls vs boys” became more clear, I did everything I could to hide from these games. Some of my therapists have posited that I started gaining weight around the onset of puberty specifically because I was afraid of being seen as a “girl” when it came to crushes, dating, and eventually sex; first of all, I obviously have issues with the idea that being fat means that you’re no longer either a girl or a sexual being, but I did spend many a thinking session about whether I was trying to purposefully exclude myself from the proto-sex games of my peers by emphasizing my unattractiveness. In addition to gaining weight, I also did not wear clothes that made me feel attractive or sexual; I hid in oversized tee shirts and baggy pants. This was further complicated by the fact that I was very poor, and did not get a lot of choice when it came to clothing – I got whatever my parents could afford, and often that meant whatever was my size at the local Salvation Army.

I eventually realized what a lesbian was, and as I grew into an adult I felt I had to model my presentation and appearance so as to include the “secret clues” that would let other gay women know I was “one of them”. Almost immediately, I was informed that I was a butch, and was encouraged to cut off my long red hair so I would fit in. It wasn’t hard to accept otherwise, as I was still wearing “men’s” or “unisex” clothing more often than not, and this was also during the time when “grunge” was popular. The difference was, there was a way that women wore plaid flannel shirts, cargo jeans, and workboots that did not lose their femininity; whereas once I started cutting my hair short, I was sometimes confused for a young man.

Secretly, I didn’t mind. I had many of my first romantic and sexual experiences with gay men, which looking back makes a ton of sense (since I now identify as a queer man), but then was a road to ruin. I was both having my heart broken over and over again as the gay men found cisgender men to date and left me; and feeding my ego on being the woman that got these avowed homosexuals into bed. It was a push me-pull you that took me many years to break; I tried to only date bisexual men, but it turned out that both men who told me they were “bi” turned out to mean “I only fuck and date girls, but if a cute boy wanted to give me head, I woudn’t say no”.

I knew that transsexuality existed; I dated a trans* woman for over a year and did a lot of accepting and comforting to help them feel more feminine. Oddly and ironically, they ended up breaking up with me because I was too masculine for them. Later I realized it was their internalized jealousy that I had been born the way they deeply wished they had, and felt I was “squandering” it by dressing and acting masculine. I had even read Kate Bornstein’s Gender Outlaws (and that’s even the same cover as the copy I had), but somehow the idea that someone born and raised female could be a man in some form or function was lost on me. Maybe I was specifically disassociating the information because I didn’t want to admit it was something I wanted or needed? I know that it took meeting an actual transsexual man before I fully understood that it was both possible and not as terrifying as I had once thought.

For almost 15 years, I just decided that I didn’t really have a gender. Or more accurately, I didn’t deal with gender as a concept. I dated men and women (and I say it that was because the majority of my lovers were cisgender), and when I was with a lover I became whatever they wanted from me – either the soft and caring gentleman, or the demure and alluring feminine submissive, or the loud and dominant lover who could as easily fuck you in the ass with their prosthetic cock as take your fist in their vagina. I wore fairly gender neutral clothing, and stayed away from anything that required one to be a “woman” or a “man” to take part. I even ended up being invited to join a traditionally-male singing group, but didn’t accept until I learned there was a cisgender woman joining at the same time.

It all came to a head when the rest of my life did. Loki was clearing away all the things that were distracting me from being able to do and be what He needed me to, and one of them was my unresolved issues with gender and being “female”. I was slow to accept this, as there were parts of my life I knew would be negatively affected if I up and decided I was a man now. I started out by trying on the “genderqueer” label, which also fits in a way, never felt fully true to who I was. I finally met a post-transition transsexual man, which proved to me that not only do they exist, but they live full and happy lives. Many of them are socially accepted, or “pass”, as male without question. It wasn’t all sunshine and roses, but nothing in life really is.

Then Loki put it all into perspective for me, in the way He does. He very calmly but very firmly informed me:

Del, I need you to be a shapeshifter. I need you to be a guardian of the boundary, the diplomat who can dance between the sexes and facilitate communication and understanding. I need you to be able to be all things to all people. To horse Gods of any gender, to take on archetypes without limitations. In order to do that, I want you to explore masculinity, to find a balance between man and woman, a place where you are both comfortable and useful at the same time. You’re no use to me if the gender thing keeps coming up over and over again.

I decided to stand up, for the smallest inner voice inside of me screaming to be heard and acknowledged. I started by asking my friends and family to use male pronouns and referring words (dude, man, guy, etc) for me. I stopped wearing overtly feminine clothes. I started to explore who I was as a man, in lots of big and little ways. It was as much a mental health thing as it was spiritual; the more I was seen and accepted as masculine, the better I felt about my place in the world.

This year, I am starting male hormones (testosterone). I do not know how ‘far’ I plan to take my hormonal transition; my goal is to find a place where random strangers would not be entirely certain if I am a Ma’am or a Sir. I know you can’t control what effects you get from T, but my hope is that my voice will become more masculine sounding and perhaps some of my facial features. I’d love to have facial hair, but I think that’s a pipe dream, as people in my birth family aren’t very hairy at all.

This decision, to start hormones, is a deep and meaningful part of reclaiming myself after my separation. My STBX was supportive of my gender journey, up until a point. He was just radically uncomfortable with anything that would change me in a way where passing as female would no longer work. He didn’t want to have to tell his parents or coworkers that he was married to a man. He was okay with being married to a masculine female (as that is one of his fantasies, being with butch women), but was not even remotely okay with being with a feminine male. There’s nothing wrong or bad about that at all. We all have preferences and choices we make about our lives, and it’s ragingly common for relationships to end when one partner decides to transition. I’m happy he’s found lovers who better suit him, gender wise, and I’m also happy that I’m now free to explore my masculinity beyond social transition.

This is my story, my choice to become visible and knowable as a transgender person living in suburban America. A shaman and spirit worker, a Lokean shapeshifter, whose gender queerness is as intrinsic to my spiritual self as it is to my physical self. I am a lover and ally to other transgender persons from all over the gender spectrum, and speak my words and teach my classes so they can see their experiences reflected back at them when seeking spiritual or sexual information I have to share. I make sure to challenge people’s perceptions, and language, and inclusivity, to make sure they remember and accept that gender variant people are as sacred as anyone else.

Del, You Big Meanie! Why are you picking on cis gender women?

I’ve kicked up a lot of dust with my post about Loki’s wives, and regardless if it was singing my praises or cursing my name for all eternity, I’m happy about it. I’m a shit stirrer, and being the speaker of hard truths has taught me that any response is better than the whistlin’ of the wind.

But there seems to be one part of the entry that people are scratchin’ their heads over, one point that doesn’t seem like something I would ordinarily say, something that doesn’t fit with the overall point(s) I was trying to make.

Namely, “Hey Del, why did you single out cis gender women in your Ranty McRanterson post? Aren’t you, like, a gender activist?”

Let me start by quoting an email I got about six weeks ago. I have the permission of the author, as long as I don’t reveal their identity.

“Dear Del,

I’m very confused and as you’re a trans* man who works with Loki, I’m hoping you can help me figure something out.

I know, down to the marrow of my bones, that Loki and I are in love. He approached me, for reasons I’m still trying to figure out. And I was excited, and scared out of my wits. So I went online to find out what other people have done about these things, because you’ve mentioned God spouses and consorts before, so I figured I would find some.

And not one of them were anything other than female.

I know that Loki emanates from a traditional human culture, one in which homosexuality was seen as either all about severe power dynamics, or about men being lesser for choosing to have sex with other men. And there were likely very few, if any, same sex unions in Norse culture. So am I crazy? Do male Gods ever take male or otherly gendered followers? Even the few non-cis-gender women I found were all born female, or identify that way now, and I’m just a gay guy living in (somewhere in middle America), sure of my sexual orientation and my gender.

I feel very alone, and I’m really afraid if I tell anyone about my love for Loki, I will be in more danger than I already am for being out as gay *and* Pagan.”

I’d love to say that was the only email I’ve ever received of that nature, but I’d be breaking my oath as a truth teller. It isn’t always Loki, or even a Norse God; and it isn’t always a cis gender man asking the question, but the theme remains.

The overarching point of the post was that we needed to take a critical look at the current trend among spirit workers, and especially the subsect of Loki’s spouses online, and see what we can learn from it, both the positives and negatives. I am aware my tone made it hard for many to see where I was saying good things about these people, so let me try again without being quite so grumpy.

One of the really inspiring thing about the Tumblr and WordPress conclaves of Loki’s wives is that they have created a strong and findable community where spiritual paths that are considered in the very minority of Pagans and polytheists are accepted and supported without having to do a lot of “proving” that what they are experiencing is real and meaningful. If you read the stories of some of the early God spouses (Freya Aswyn was brought up in one of these discussions), you’ll see that God spouses were unilaterally treated as people who had jumped the shark when it came to spirit devotion. But they paved the way for these communities to thrive and flourish, maybe to such a place where non-spouses are seen as the odd men out.

For a while, I asked about non cis female spouses. I asked to be linked to blogs, books, and other reference material where I could send people like the dude above to let them know they’re not alone. I know they exist; I’ve met and interacted with a few of them but few of them blog about their experiences. Because they are so few, a Google search on God Spouses or the like don’t usually highlight these references. But many, many of the online safe havens for Loki’s wives show up.

Another commenter called me on belittling the teenager-crush-like behavior that many of these blogs and bulletin boards sport in droves. Although I admit, part of my derision makes me an asshole; I have been in more than one serious conversation about why Lokeans are excluded from some Heathen, Asatru, and other Norse-derived groups, and this “I had prawns at an adorable dark tavern in Jotunheim with Loki, and He was wearing the sexiest leather pants” attitude comes up. I agree, it’s not nice, fair, or right to have that held against us as somehow less serious or reverent than how others relate to their Gods; but they aren’t completely wrong either. Few other Gods, from any pantheon, have groups of followers who treat their Gods like that hot transfer student in English class with the leather jacket and the distressed jeans. I know they exist, but not in such numbers.

I don’t think this means that the Loki mooners need to shut up and go away, although I think using more discernment as to what they share about their devotional work and how it reflects on the greater community they represent, whether they like it or not, or whether they choose to be representatives or not, could be helpful to those who actually care about Loki being hailed at places like Trothmoot. I don’t belong to any of those sorts of organizations, as I do not identify as a Heathen, nor are all of the Gods I worship from the Norse pantheon. I do sometimes use the term “Northern Tradition Pagan”, but they’re specifically not only Loki-accepting, but dual-trad accepting as well.

I expect that many of the people I’m describing will happily go on doing exactly as they’ve been doing, or even start fake Tumblr accounts specific to spoof on my and others grumptastic views of them. Good. Part of what I want from all this dust-upping is for people to speak authentically about their experience, and if it’s all movie date nights and co-writing erotica, please for the love of Sleipnir don’t let some cranky redheaded old fart (me, not Loki) stop you. Running away because some asshole criticized you on the Internet is about as ludicrous as lying about shamanic abilities in order to make people think you’re awesome.

What I would like, if I may be so bold as to ask, is to take a moment to think about how you, the ones with the safe havens and popular Tumbrs, can help the guy who wrote me. Ways to be inclusive in you FAQs and advise columns to other God spouses and consorts to make sure you’re not setting a standard or assumption that one must be a certain age, sex, level of ability (in whatever), or sexual orientation in order to join your Fun Brigade. Use inclusive language when you write about your own experiences, so that people who have different plumbing can still relate. Link to people who are writing about God sex and/or relationships that aren’t heterocentric or assumptive. Remember that Loki Himself is a liminal God, and therefore isn’t always the lanky, elf-looking redhead I’ve seen way too many fan art pictures of. Heck, he fucked a male horse once, as a female horse, so who’s to say he doesn’t come in a female form to a male mortal, or has heterosexual sex with men as a woman, or homosexual sex with either men or women? Or maybe he manifests intersex genitalia and interacts with a slew of differently gendered people that way?

What makes this odd and a little uncomfortable for me, is that I am neither a Loki’s spouse or even a consort. I’ve had sex with Gods, but not Loki. Elizabeth Vongvisith used to tag posts that described sex with Loki as “Not Safe For Dels”, because as my Father I have some of the same hang ups as mortal children have about thinking about or seeing their parents engaging in long hot sessions of fuck. As a sex educator, I can at least accept that all parents, including my own (God or mortal), have sex lives – or none of us would be here – but like many offspring, I have no desire to see or hear about it, thank you very much.

But I don’t go around to the blogs and journals of Loki’s chosen and chastise them for describing the monkeyhumping that they do with Dad; in fact, specifically because of my love and service to the greater Lokean community, I suffer through quite a lot of it with grace.

One last thing, as I have to go to bed early tonight.

I’m an asshole. Just some dude who eats, and shits, and watches too much reality tv. (In fact, I’ll probably watch me some Celebrity Apprentice when I’m done writing this. Judge me!) Maybe you see me as some sort of “elder”, but please take note that I call myself a lot of things, like a grandpa and a cranky bastard and an old fart, but, like “shaman”, I really believe that a title like “elder” is one that is bestowed on you by those who recognize your work and contributions to community. So whether you invest any real meaning in my ranty pants, or dismiss me outright, is your choice. I am not now, nor will I ever, profess that I have it all figured out, that I am the sole arbiter on what spirit workers and shamans ought to be and not to be doing. Furthermore, I’m not a God spouse at all, but only know what I know from having the luck and blessing to know some really wonderful, intelligent, and well spoken ones who have deigned me as someone they can share the nitty-gritty of what it’s all about for them. I haven’t met every single God spouse, nor have I read every single entry on every single webpage written by all of them. I can only comment on trends that are remarked upon by people I trust, and what I experience in my own life. I am always, always open to be told how very wrong I am, and those who have commented on that post, or any other I’ve written or commented on will attest that I do not come out, fists ablazin’, unless you start attacking me or people I love by name or by insinuation. Otherwise, I wholeheartedly enjoy learning about the breadth and depth of spiritual expression that exists, and if that learning comes with a “Hey Doofus, read this!” as its invitation, then I accept.

There is at least one, if not more, repostes I will be writing in reaction to the crankyjock one, so don’t think this is the last you’ll hear of it. And if you read this blog for the kink stuff, there will be some good posts about that coming very soon too.

Thank you, each and every one of you, for reading, responding,debating, berating, and commenting on what I write.

“I aspire to inspire before I expire.” Unknown, possibly Manali Jan