The first night I saw Fox after my vacation return, he told me he’d found himself on the Ashley Madison data dump online.
No, don’t worry, this isn’t another post about the whole debacle. I’m tired of it already. And for what it’s worth: of course nobody should violate your privacy rights, yes some people enjoy the misery of cheaters, yes, some people will look people up they know (not always for nefarious reasons), there are hypocrites in this world, and yes, cheaters should always consider what would happen if they are found out.
I asked why on earth he would bother joining an affair site when he wasn’t married (recall, he’s been single for 14 years). He said he did it after a particularly bad breakup when he wanted casual sex only, figuring it might be a guaranteed way to find someone who didn’t want any strings.
Of course I retorted, laughing, saying I knew few women capable of having no strings attached affairs (one of my blogging friends being a classic example).
He went on to say that after said breakup, he’d first joined Plenty of Fish, where his first match was the woman he’d just broken up with. At that point, he knew he wasn’t ready. Hence Ashley Madison.
But of course I asked him in general how he would know he wasn’t ready. I was busying myself with changing the vinyl record on my turntable, thinking about Tony.
Fox said “you might think you’re ready, but you don’t know until something happens and you realize you aren’t ready.”
I told him I would quote him on that.
I’ve been in that situation for a while now, thinking I’m ready for something more. Since late last fall, really. I love sex and that hasn’t changed. I’m willing to have casual sex. But more than anything, I’d like to be in a relationship. I’d like to have a boyfriend. This is not what I said a year ago. I knew I wasn’t ready.
I know I’ve been a bit quiet since back from my trip. I was with Fox four nights in the first seven days (Sunday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday) and then he and I also spent the day together yesterday. It’s really, really, good.
I need to write more about how I feel. It’s so strange to not feel stress or anxiety in this stage of a relationship. There’s no drama. He is not only clear about how much he likes me, but he shows it in multiple ways. He’s actively invested in making sure I’m happy and satisfied.
I’ve had some of these things before, but it usually comes in a package that is also insecure and needy. Willing to make too many sacrifices, to his detriment. Foolish about the stage of relationship we are in. Not strong.
Fox is strong. He doesn’t waste time in relationships that aren’t good for him; at least, that’s what he’s told me. While he’s loosening his boundaries as they relate to his daughter and his availability, he’s making those choices quite deliberately. He tells me what he needs.
It’s pretty fucking awesome.
We became Facebook friends this week. It’s been a bit of a running joke between us, as in the past he’s quite cavalierly allowed women to “friend” him after a few dates, and then he doesn’t unfriend them. I said I was rather horrified by it; it’s the equivalent of giving someone a huge stack of photo albums and notes passed between you and your friends to read.
I told him the first person I accepted a Facebook friend request from was the Giant and then quickly realized it was a mistake. I quietly unfriended him when I broke up with him. Johnny Id is the only other man I’ve connected with on Facebook.
But it became clear to me it was important to Fox. I finally got him to say “yes, Ann, I’d like us to be Facebook friends”, and I sent him the request right then. We were on our way to a craft beer festival. He was in heaven. He posted a dual selfie which he tagged me in and the comments started rolling in.
No, not from ex girlfriends.
Our mothers, his buddies, an old friend from high school. They were wishing us all the best with kisses and hugs. Totally over the top.
Then he told me I was the first woman he’s posted a picture with.
I was a little freaked out by that.
Then my best friend texted me: “Hey, looked at Facebook. Is there something I should know? You getting married?”
I told Fox later I felt a lot of pressure and responsibility. While I didn’t say it, I’ve spent time thinking about whether I’m ready. Obviously moving on from Tony is no small feat, even though I’m doing it and not emotionally looking back (and no, I’ve heard nothing from him since our phone conversation – but I’m feeling a need for real closure instead of devoting any mental time wondering when/if I’m going to hear from him again).
I met Fox just shy of two months ago. And you know what?
I’m totally ready.