After my first solo date with Andrew, we spoke about when to see each other again. I tried to not be too presumptuous about what he wanted. I’m trying to be more careful on both sides.
From his perspective, I know he has a couple of others, and he has no issues with just casual relationships. I need to resist the urge to think his behaviour means something specific. Because that’s how I get hurt.
I will give you an example. I thought his making me dinner was really nice. Compared to some of the other men I’ve met, making me dinner would signify a major statement of how much I’m valued. And yes, I know how pathetic that sounds. But I’ve been with men who never thought to bring a bottle of wine with them, even though I hosted every. single. time.
But Andrew seems different. He makes an effort. So, I humbly submit that perhaps making me dinner isn’t unusual for him. Therefore, it makes me wonder if I’m like everyone else in his eyes.
From my perspective, I don’t want to get ahead of myself. He’s a nice guy, a decent guy, and he’s treating me well, but I don’t even really know him yet. There are a lot of different characteristics that will make or break a relationship. I’m still figuring out the things that I want and need, and I don’t want to be far down the emotional path before I find out a relationship is untenable. But I tend to go down that path anyway…or at least act like it.
And that goes both ways. I wouldn’t want to be head over heels about someone when they find out something about me that means they need to say goodbye.
All that to say, I’m being cautious.
Or at least I’m trying to be.
This situation also makes me realise I have no idea how to just date someone. I met Will (my ex) not long after I graduated from college. Dating was different then, or at least it was for me. I’m also out of practice. Yes, I’ve admittedly had quite the bevy of men in the past 14 months. But when I think about the experiences I’ve had, I don’t know that I would call it dating.
If you read the “Men I’ve Slept With” series, you’ll see what I mean. There were many men I ended up just seeing once. You could hardly call my relationships with P / Shenanigans, Naked Ironing Man, and Jason, dating. With each of them, we went for drinks or dinner a couple of times, but my dating bar is set much higher than that. The rest of the time they came to my place and we fucked.
I didn’t even really date Ariel, who was lovely. I could have with him; he was interested in different activities in the city. But I wasn’t interested in him that way.
The Giant lived in a different city. The dates we did go on were good, but we actually didn’t see each other all that much. When he was staying with me the only thing we did each night, other than sex, was watch movies. I was disappointed that he had no desire to go out and do things. Regardless, despite 10 or so posts written about him, we didn’t actually “date” for that long.
There were others, of course, but a few dates here and there don’t quite make it to the summary page. Sorry fellas.
I don’t need to recount Johnny’s story here. My first serious relationship after my split, and it was with someone 5,000 miles away. Torture. There is no comparison to the other men who have shared my bed. Very few others have shared my heart.
One thing I failed to realize was how different it was to be with someone who had read my innermost thoughts and feelings, and who knew everything I’d been up to in the previous year. I cannot expect to have the same hyper-honesty with anyone else and I’m catching myself in conversations with others because I am so used to just putting it all out there.
Wow. I kind of got off topic. But I suppose it’s all relevant.
All that to say, I don’t know how to proceed. I wrote a bit about not wanting to be in an FWB relationship, and I meant it. I will catch you up to current day because I’m now on vacation and have enough going on in my mind that I don’t want to be forced to write about past dates.
Here’s the short version. Andrew and I have seen each other several times since that first solo date. He came to my place three times, after my son was asleep. Each time, we didn’t just have sex. We snacked and drank wine and talked on my couch, getting to know each other better. Yes, we had sex too…it was hot and fulfilling…but that wasn’t all it was about.
Of course, my ongoing challenge with bodily fluids and him continues. The first time, I thought my period was over but NOPE. So now I think I’ve covered all the fluid (and solids!!) bases. He said “I hope you realize by now I’m not the kind of man to get bothered with that sort of stuff”.
I discovered that if you squirt while you are at the tail end of your period, and you have white cotton sheets, it looks like blood splatter from a murder. Dexter would have a field day. My education continues.
He told me that the two FWB relationships he has are different. There is no potential with them. Both are on the decline. The time we are spending together is different from the others – he needs intellectual stimulation for a relationship, which is something I provide. That he wouldn’t be spending the time if he didn’t see potential. He told me there was no comparison at all between them and me. That I’m fantastic in bed.
One of his best phrases so far? That the way things are going is not surprising, since we have had chemistry and discourse.
Some of these conversations occurred before my debate about being able to be in a FWB situation. I decided to tell him where my head was at. So, one night, laying in bed together, I told him I didn’t want a FWB. And that I couldn’t handle being with someone who was with others. NOT because I wanted to be in a heavy relationship that had a clear path toward something serious, but just because I wasn’t in a place where I was mature enough to deal with it.
Before I met my ex, I used to say that I was a serial monogamist, even if that monogamy lasted only one night. That’s what I’m talking about. I don’t have the time or the emotional energy right now to be managing a bunch of different guys, sleeping with them all, and having them do the same. It’s far too difficult to really measure what a relationship with that person might be like. I want to meet someone, spend some time with them, and then decide whether to continue or to say goodbye.
He told me he didn’t think it was a maturity thing at all. We talked a bit about my being competitive, and also that it was an insecurity thing (that’s when he made the comment I referenced early, that there was no comparison whatsoever).
He asked me what I was saying, and I said I wasn’t asking him to change anything but that I recognized I was having trouble with it and needed to sort it out. He volunteered that the one woman he’s with is pretty much at its end and it just needs a conversation to end it. And that with the other, it’s on a decline anyway.
I resisted my natural urge to press for more information. Because, I am learning. More information will just give me more to obsess about. If there’s anything to obsess about, it should be that this VERY experienced man thinks I’m the cat’s pyjamas in bed. That every time he grabs my ass he says “oh my god” to himself. That I’m worth winding down this physical relationships for. That he wondered out loud why I’m not sharing much about my past with him.
And that he liked me enough to get up at 5:30am and drive me to the airport.
To be continued…