I’m 28 years old and I’ve been an adult baby for roughly 14 years. Before I was 18 I’d have been considered a ‘teen baby’ I guess, but a term which I never identified with due to not being too familiar with the many terms you come across in the AB/DL community. Never the less, I’ve been struggling with this for 14 years. I use the word “struggling” because frankly, it has been a struggle. At times it’s been a massive struggle. I originally started this blog to document my journey towards self acceptance and hopefully manage to write some relatable posts which may act as reassurance to other struggling AB/DLs.
Now I don’t know how interesting or effective this blog has actually been for others, but it’s definitely been a good thing for me on some level. For one thing it’s been an effective means of communication between my girlfriend and me because sometimes I find it very difficult to speak openly and honestly about my feelings with her. Don’t get me wrong, I’m generally good at expressing how I feel most of the time, but sometimes my feelings can make me a bit overwhelmed, so when I talk about it things comes out in one big BLARGH and sometimes isn’t really coherent or consistent (at least thats how I see it). Sometimes my thoughts/feelings contrast one another and they’re can often be based solely on emotions I’m feeling in that instant and not necessarily my true beliefs. Alas I just feel the need to blurt things out sometimes without thinking about what I really want to say, so this blog is a good way to really reflect on what I’m feeling and helps my partner understand me a little better. I’ve also mentioned in the past that I sometimes struggle with issues relating to my mood which sometimes causes me to shut down entirely and be completely mute about what I’m feeling. It can be really horrible for both of us when this occurs and it has never proven to be healthy or helpful, so the blogs been good for that too.
I feel that I’ve recently lost track of the reason I started this blog and either written irrelevant posts or just uploaded photographs of myself, or just not posted at all. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with that per se, it’s been fun keeping a blog, but I slightly regret not using it more it’s intended purpose. So I hope to start using it a bit more in the near future and write more useful and therapeutic posts. Anyway…
Just over 3 years ago I told my girlfriend that I’m an adult baby (or there abouts). 18 months later I started my blog because as I said, I felt it would be an interesting idea to write about my thoughts, feelings and experiences as an AB/DL struggling with self acceptance and talk about how it affected my relationship and post them online. My partner equally thought it to be a good idea. Thus “Peter’s little Secret” was born!
Although it’s true that we’ve come a long way, I don’t know if things have improved or worsened. I’d like to think that things have improved because we’re now much more open about it and I feel as though I can talk to her about things which I wouldn’t have years ago. Also, just telling another person has taken a huge weight off my shoulders and it’s been a huge relief knowing that I’m not holding in a secret which deep down I’ve always desperately wanted to share with someone. However, sometimes I think that by opening up about it to my girlfriend, I’ve in fact just made things far more complicated in our relationship and opened up a can of worms. The optimist in me would think “That’s not true, if you weren’t open about it then things would have just gotten worse, so be proud of yourself and stop thinking too much”. Whereas my typical pessimist thinking says “Maybe I’m just better off alone, that way I would never have to explain and/or compromise myself. It’s too difficult for us both and I should never have bothered. None of us signed up for this”.
Things have now gotten to a point where I’m somewhere in the middle. I feel like I’ve reached a crossroads where I’ll either just want to either forget about the whole thing, or keep wading through the tarpit to see if it pays off for our relationship. The problem is I just don’t seem to know what I want anymore. I’m just stuck at this cross road and have been for a while.
I’m constantly fighting this battle where I can’t help but feel like I’m forcing an interest on her and that I have these unrealistic expectations of her e.g what to say, how to act, what to wear, when to know how I feel etc. I suppose that comes through wanting too much maybe? Though I’m aware that she does make a huge effort and she doesn’t really mind so much that I’m an adult baby – there’s still that part of me that thinks she shouldn’t have to deal with things like this and that prevents me from trying to pursue our parent/little relationship further or prevent it from progressing. It always seems to come back to feeling a sense of “shame”. Also, while I’m being bruitally honest sometimes it makes me really frustrated that it’s not something she loves and is really into. I think most AB/DLs have that fantasy of meeting the perfect mummy/carer who will equally enjoy it and get similar amounts of gratification. But the reality is, a large percentage probably won’t ever have that and incorporating it into their relationship is going to consist largely of compromise. But compromise is hard for AB/DLs because, well, they act like children! Sometimes I tell myself we’d work better as a couple if this wasn’t always coming between us and that maybe we should just try to forget about it. Again, these are just thoughts and not necessarily my beliefs. To add fuel to that fire, my partner is also affected by my negative thinking because I get the impression that she feels she’s not good enough for me or that she’s not what I want/need as an AB/DL. of course that couldn’t be further from the truth, especially with regards to our adult/adult relationship. But I dunno.. Something I am guilty of thinking that maybe this is one thing that we’re just not compatible on. I hated writing that.
I suppose the progress we’ve made in 3 years isn’t exactly what I’ve expected. Not only have things not progressed at the speed I’d have wished for, but I don’t even know if things have went in the direction I wanted them to. But admittedly, I’m saying that from a selfish point of view because it’s not just about what I want or what I’m comfortable with, its about both of us, I get that. But I’m not a saint and sometimes maybe I’m just a bit selfish when it comes to my want’s and needs. Jeez, I’m such a child sometimes! (haha)
While I’m on the subject of progress, here’s a quote from Rosaline Bent’s great book “There’s a baby in my bed” which I find myself looking a from time to time for some peace of mind.
There is no rush. Your Little One always wants to rush, as it is the nature of a child. Don’t let him rush you, but go into it at your own pace. Just make sure that the pace isn’t glacial. If progress is so slow that it is not apparent, then he will grow frustrated and assume you no longer want to pursue any of it.
There have been periods in our relationship when we haven’t spoken about it at all, whereas there have been other times when things have been rushed and I’ve gotten the impression that my girlfriend suspects a Parent/Child relationship is all I’m interested in. It’s been really difficult settling on a pace of which we are both comfortable with and what works. Sometimes we go through phases of completely forgetting/neglecting my little and our parent/child relationship has suffered because of that. Maybe it’s been too difficult or awkward to reestablish little time after such long quiet periods. The easiest thing has always been to just ignore it, for me anyway.
After years of dreaming about telling a partner and the prospect of having a mummy to take care of me, I finally managed to achieve it (kind of). The strange thing is that now the burden has been lifted and I sort of have a mummy, its become just another burden in another aspect of my life. I’m reminded of a saying:
Ironically, we tend to want what we can’t have. Then once we get it, we don’t want it anymore.
I’m being a bit melodramatic here because I know this is a part of me which will probably never go away and in a few weeks my opinions will change, I’m probably just having one of those “purge” moments. But what I do believe is that now I’ve experienced having a mummy, and now that I know how hard it is to maintain this sort of thing in a relationship, the strong and almost uncontrollable urges and desires just seem to be fading. I don’t know if its the stress from work, moving home, or just a mix of things. But for the past few months, I feel like the positive things about being AB/DL have been sucked out of me and all I’m left with is a failed attempt at happiness. The whole thing is draining.
I mean getting it out in the open was one thing, and I think because it was so important for me to talk to my girlfriend about it that I didn’t really consider where I intended it to go from there. Have I always just assumed that I’d be able to some how ‘get her to like it’? I know that for some women who especially have a nurturing/maternal side to them it can be a wonderful thing which brings two people closer together. But to this day it still feels like my girlfriend is doing me a favour. I just don’t think she’s that type of person. It pains me to admit this, but sometimes the frustration makes me want to yell “you just don’t get it and I feel you never will”. Maybe I’m wrong, I certainly hope I am. But I really don’t want to learn that she’s just trying to be a good girlfriend for me, because I don’t want that, I want us both to be equally content in all aspects of our relationship. She’s the most amazing person I’ve ever met and we love each other unconditionally, I know we’ll always be together. But at the moment I feel as though that some pieces aren’t quite fitting. The shitty thing is that I don’t really know what to do about it!
In spirit of this slightly depressing post, here’s a song that’s makes me feel better and has a slightly appropriate title!
Bye for now,
Little Peter (picked a plate of pickled peppers) x