A lovely reader yesterday inquired whether anything bad has happened, as it had been 10 days since I’d posted. The short answer is no, everything is very… stable.
My sex life has been rather quiet – and it’s not a complaint. The very end of November was my last night with Lewis and Clark. I haven’t seen Clark since, and Lewis only once, over a month ago. The first weekend in December was the last time I had sex with Todd. I wrote about Tony on Christmas Eve. I had Jason back in my bed for the first time in a year, over a month ago.
For me, that’s quiet.
I actually haven’t had many new lovers since the summer. I had a one night stand with a guy on a business trip. I met Todd through Clark. Then Alan on Bumble (who still texts me even though I ignore him), and Leo on AFF.
I am relieved that neither Lewis nor Clark have asked to see me, and that Todd hasn’t been back in my city. Because I don’t want to have a moral dilemma. While Leo hasn’t asked for exclusivity, I know I’m the only one he is having sex with. I am slightly concerned he may have interpreted my (carefully worded) statement he was the only man in my life I saw as having any relationship potential, as meaning he was the only man I was being intimate with.
But he’s no dummy, and I suspect he actually won’t ask for it until he knows we have long-term potential. Maybe.
When it comes to feelings and emotional, he’s not a big talker, and I find myself struggling with it. Last summer I wrote about having a knack for finding extremes. Men who either are practically or emotionally unavailable, leaving me wondering whether they like me and fighting for attention or time. Men who fall head over heels for me in a nanosecond and suffocate me with their adoration.
Leo is neither, and I’m off-balance as a result.
As adults, we often seek out relationships that mirror those we had in our formative years. A man whose attention and/or acceptance I have to fight for – much like my father – is known to me. As painful as it is, it’s a pattern I’m familiar with. It’s probably why I could last so long with someone like Tony. And while I don’t doubt his adoration of me, the situation meant he was never fully mine. The yearning and seeking for more than what a man was giving me? Yes, painful – and familiar.
The other extreme I can escape more quickly. Will let myself be stabbed in the heart over and over again by someone like Tony, but try to suffocate me? Try it once and I’m likely to throw them off and out of my life, and not look back.
I don’t have to fight for Leo’s attention or affection. He texts to ask when I have breaks in my day to come over for a snuggle. He texts consistently, and calls almost every day. Both his and my top two Love Languages are Quality Time and Affection, and he gives me both.
He also hasn’t said he loves me or that he’s falling for me. He hasn’t introduced me to his friends (although I did cave one day and ask if he’d told anyone about me. He said his 3 closest friends know about me) or his children. We are planning a sun vacation together in late March, but he doesn’t make rosy promises of a future together. He doesn’t look deep into my eyes and tell me how beautiful I am.
He’s given me no reason to doubt.
But I’m off balance all the same. This past week I found myself wanting to ask him how he feels. Worrying at some level perhaps he isn’t sure if I have long-term potential. Not different, probably, from my own headspace – I like him a lot and am taking it slow. But yet, I’m so fucking used to a man either being distant or cloying… I just don’t know what to do.
We had a dinner and movie date on the weekend. I am finally out of my cast and have a walking boot and am trying short distances. It was wonderful to be out, even though painful and awkward. It was our second or third overnight date. I am thrilled to report his penis worked twice. We were in bed together for 12 hours, with a decent amount of sleep. It was wonderful.
And before he left the next day, sitting in my living room drinking a coffee, I shared the thesis of this post with him. That I was off balance and despite everything being fine, needed to hear how he felt.
He was measured and careful. He said he liked our dynamic and the space we gave each other. He thinks about me all the time. A few other nice things. Later, when I told him I was feeling vulnerable, he said he didn’t want me to feel that way. I told him it was exactly how he should want me to feel, because being vulnerable means I’m allowing myself to be open to something solid and lasting.
I told him I thought perhaps what we had could be solid and lasting.
He whispered “me, too”.
And that has to be enough for me today.
All pictures from the Leo posts are from the 1962 film “Phaedra”