It was Wednesday, and John did a decent job during the day of chilling out. He sent only a few texts about Friday’s plans. He said he was going to bring food, his guitar, and his favorite movie and I wouldn’t have to do a thing. It sounded pretty good.
He’d asked again whether he could come over that night, and I’d said I needed a quiet night. While it was true, it was also because I wanted – needed – to create some space between the two of us in the hopes he’d relax about things. I told him I’d chalked up the previous day’s texting debacle to temporary insanity.
I was putting Liam to bed and noticed a series of texts come in. John said “Fuck it I’m coming over to see you. I’ll just hop in the shower first.”I’d told him not a few hours prior that I needed a quiet night. This was starting to get really aggravating. I told him no. He said he just needed an hour “on top of me” and then right afterward, not giving me any time to reply, said “okay no worries. Friday is soon anyway.”
We spoke briefly on the phone when I was going to bed. I was aware that I was getting highly irritated and didn’t want to punish him unnecessarily.
Thursday he sent some pictures and texts mid-afternoon. There was a bit more over-the-top stuff but I was in intense meetings and didn’t see them until later. He asked if he could come over that night and I said no. He’d sent me a list of random, sexy, and funny things we should have on our “to do together” list. He then asked me which I liked… a reasonable question except I’d gone from all-day meetings to being in Mom mode.
I told him it would have to wait. When I finally replied later that night with the things on his list I liked, he replied that we “should plan Mexico soon if we want to go.”
What. The. Actual. Fuck.
I said he perhaps has no filter or impulse control. I repeated what I’d said before about my discomfort with being pushed. That he seemed to hear me for a short while then would forget again. He said “don’t worry, the week I asked you for ends at midnight. Then the deal is off and you can do whatever you like. No pressure. Let’s take it one day at a time. Each new thing we do helps us decide. I have not decided on us yet either. Who knows.”
I didn’t believe him and found it difficult to think he believed himself. I said “If that’s actually what you believe then stop sending texts that imply otherwise. I don’t know how else to ask. I’ve asked you multiple times. I don’t think you’re listening or perhaps don’t understand/believe me when I tell you IT MAKES ME RETREAT.”
He said “Okay, here is the new deal. Each time we are together we enjoy it. If it leads to another time will be decided afterward. No plans, no expectations. Every kiss could be the last. Try that for two weeks and see if we are still seeing each other. All real dates, I don’t want to be your fuck buddy. Will this make you feel more at ease.”
It just made me mad. I told him to stop making deals with me.
We had our date on Friday night. It was actually nice. Except for the part where he told me he couldn’t date someone if they were having sex with other people. I explained yet again how I felt about relationships in the early days, why I saw it as a red flag when someone (him) seemed to be way far ahead. That while you may know there is potential, you simply can’t know whether a relationship will work with someone until you’ve spent some time with them.
He wanted to watch his favorite movie. I told him given it was well after 9 pm and if he wanted to watch the movie it would mean there wouldn’t be a whole lot of time for sex afterward. He decided to put the movie in. I fell asleep in his lap. I knew when I wasn’t all that excited about having sex with him that our time together was short-lived.
On the weekend, my Mom counseled me to give him a little bit of time – he was obviously smitten but might not know how to deal with a woman like me.
I lasted another week.
We had one more date. I found myself irritated most of the time and I knew it wasn’t going to get better. He was doing his best to be kind and nice to me, but the more he tried the less I wanted what he had to offer. He stayed overnight at my place, the sex was short and relatively unsatisfying. I was thinking of someone else the whole time.
I knew what I had to do. I met Gregory the day after my date with John, and the stark contrast between my early read of them cemented my decision. I’d already told John I wasn’t available on Saturday but he was texting and asking if we could get together. He called me, I told him I couldn’t continue with him since I wasn’t in the same place as he was. He was sad.
And in typical fashion, not much later he texted “You can change your mind. Take a week. See if you miss me. Or how much. Take a week of radio silence.”
But I’m having no more of his deals.