Before I started working on this blog post draft again, I thought I had answered the sleep or sexting? question that I’d struggled with when I first started writing it. My depression makes it hard enough to get out of bed in the morning as it is, even when I get enough sleep. The logical thing to do for my mental illness is to chose going to bed over late night flirting every time. And yet…
(Content note: this post contains discussion of depression and intrusive thoughts.)
Last night I intended to stay up late, because a fellow sex blogger’s YouTube livestream was starting at midnight my time and I was going to watch it as a reward for having pushed through a bad mental health day. Of course, I fell asleep long before then. Before I did, I spent a few hours lying in bed, lazily wanking and scrolling through Twitter. I was too tired to do anything productive but too restless to sleep.
I woke up at 2am, confused and disorientated. I woke up at 4am, feeling so disconnected to my body that I had to take a shower to stop it from feeling like I needed to scratch my way out of my own skin. I woke up again at 6am, to clean my teeth and finally close my curtains properly.
I slept until almost noon and while I woke up in a pool of warm sunshine, he aching tiredness I’ve carried with me all day has confirmed one thing: my sleep schedule is somewhat fucked up.
Although no one has confirmed that my difficulty sleeping is tired to my mental illness, I strongly suspect it is. I struggle to get to sleep, with with physical exhaustion battling an itchy anxiety that fills my mind and my body and stopping me from switching off even after I close my eyes. When I raise the issue, doctors tell me that only getting five or six hours sleep a night is fine, but getting much under eight hours of rest will leave me in a zombie-like state, unable to go about my day as a functional adult.
I’m getting better at managing my sleep to stop my mental illness from overwhelming me. I have routines to help me switch off in the evening, and have learned how to prepare for the day ahead in a way that helps me get up in the morning. To do lists and plans help me manage my anxiety, and I seem to have finally internalised the fact that I need sleep to be able to be productive. Forcing myself to stay up and work doesn’t actually get anything done.
So I acknowledge that sleep is important and make myself go to bed.
The problem is that even if am able to convince myself to stop working and feel calm and sleepy as I climb into bed, the world is still full of cute humans. There are lots of cute humans who I want to kiss, many of whom do not live in my timezone, and even those who do are generally very busy cute humans. Late nights are sometimes the only time I have for flirting and sexting, and I really, really like flirting and sexting. So I stay awake.
If I’m being honest, these conversations cut into my sleep time in a way that often is detrimental to my own health. I know the sensible thing to do… and I also know what my dirty word-slut wants, and my cunt wants. And I know which one feels better in the moment, even if I know it won’t tomorrow. When faced with the question ‘do I go to sleep or stay awake sexting?’ I often get it wrong.
Sleep or sexting? It’s been a long day, but there’s a cute girl in my DMs who I want to exchange flirty messages with. I tell her all the sadistic, dominant things I wish I could do to her. As I craft words and come up with ideas that make her squirm, my heart sores and I giggle. Until, of course, she is sensible and heads to bed, and I’m now far too awake to fall asleep anytime soon.
Sleep or sexting? I’m exhausted, but what I really want is to get my butt punched until I slip into a medatative headspace. I can’t have that, but the next best thing is wrapping myself in my fuck-buddy’s deliciously hot words. I fall into the fantasy he types out for me, and I love every second of it. Until, of course, I find myself in a tangle of sheets at 3am with a burning clit, too het up to sleep.
Sleep or sexting? I have so much to do tomorrow but I have arranged a DM date with my long distance play partner, and my excitement at talking to them outweighs any rational thought. It’s evening here but early afternoon in their timezone, and spending time with them (even virtually) is so much fun that I want to keep flirting and exploring each other’s kinks together. Until, of course, I am so tired that I can’t keep my eyes open anymore, and fall asleep mid-reply in an uncomfortable position.
I am weak – at least in how I allow my horn to overwhelm me again and again. I’m sharing this because I want to get better at looking after myself. Sex is hugely important to my mental health, but sleep is more important. The people I sext with are an important part of my support network – they’d all prefer me to say no to late night flirting and go to bed when I need to. They’ll understand that as much as I love sexting, sleep has to be my priority; it’s me who doesn’t want that to be true.
And now I’ve finished writing this, it’s time for bed. (Unless one of my play partners has slid into my DMs with a delightfully filthy message…)
This post was brought to you by the vibrator I use most often for getting off before I go to bed, because orgasms make me sleepy and relaxed. You can buy a Doxy wand vibrator for just £84.99 from The Pleasure Garden (an inclusive, sex-positive, UK-based company who ship overseas!).