I’m not sure how much “space” I’ve actually created

do feel quieter, mentally. It’s all relative, I suppose. I still wake up with thoughts of lost friendship and lost potential, but it’s the exception, not the rule. I don’t miss online dating. I’d left one app on my phone called Inner Circle – it’s new-ish and proved to be completely useless: only two men in my city on the app over the age of 38, my height or more, with a college education and children. TWO.

If I removed the “children” requirement there were maybe twenty.

A 28 year-old tall handsome professional reached out to me. He said he loved older women and I seemed to be exactly his type. He was interesting and articulate and figured I had nothing to lose by responding. We texted back and forth for a week. He flaked on a date we’d booked for tonight and I didn’t care one bit.

I’m back to work tomorrow after an extended vacation. I don’t want to work; after the insanity of the Fall it was nice to be able to have a break. I’m excited about the work I’m doing these days but could easily have another two weeks away.

Today was a bit of a house disaster. We are in a deep freeze like most of the country; I woke up to no hot water. Managed to get it fixed. Then my dishwasher didn’t work. Thank goodness for the internet; got that fixed myself as well. Then my thermostat stopped working so there was no heat. That one took a little more work, but a trip to the hardware store, reading the manual, and using my drill and work gloves, got it all sorted out.

I don’t have Liam this coming week, so knew I wanted to see a few people. Before I knew it, I’d booked every night Monday through Friday with a different man. Hence, the post title.

Tomorrow I’m supposed to see Dan, but I now doubt it’s going to happen. He’s away in his hometown this weekend and texted me as he always does. But this time, late at night and perhaps fuelled by alcohol, he got back into asking me detailed questions about dating and sex.

He’d pestered me about Zane a while back. While normally I wouldn’t disclose that I’m dating anyone else, Dan seems to like to know. The weekend Zane and I went for dinner, Dan kept asking what I was doing that night until I finally relented and said I’d met someone and he was taking me for dinner.

Last night he wanted to know whether Zane had met Liam (no!), how many times I’d seen him, etcetera. He even asked about his cock size.

I’m pretty good about deflecting Dan when I don’t want to answer. I call him out on it – asking why he wants or feels he needs to know. Once he started suggesting he and I go to a sex club together, I laid out (again) why that wasn’t going to happen. We needed to be better bonded with each other, I thought he was messed up about sex (he left Christmas night without so much as a deep kiss, because he’d eaten too much), and trust is critically important.

I was texting him from the MacBook Pro he sold me. I’d asked him a few times to please just let me sleep. It was well after midnight. He then asked why I wasn’t answering my phone. It was face down and on silent on my nightstand. He’d called seven times in a row. I called him back, he wanted to know all kinds of specific details about things which I refused to answer. When I said “can I please go to sleep now” he hung up without saying goodbye.

So, I’m pretty pissed off and he may be as well; I haven’t received any text messages from him since.

Tuesday I’m seeing Lewis for a standard drink, work talk, and fuck.

Wednesday I’m taking Zane to the symphony. He’s never been. I think something has shifted for him – perhaps as a result of our “children” talk. For a guy who said he wanted to see me multiple times a week if we were dating, he’s been rather quiet.

I’m okay with it. I’m not pushing anything because I don’t know what I want. He said he wanted me to text him more; although he doesn’t send good morning or evening texts, he wanted me to. I’m sure that’s a surprise to many of you. I explained I was letting him set the pace of texting because if a woman texts more than a guy does, they take it the wrong way. His response? “Yeah, you’re right… the truth is hard to swallow.”

I think he’s used to being pursued.

Thursday I’m seeing Tony. Ever since telling me about the divorce, he’s been more flirty. I have some questions, and I want to tell him he doesn’t get a free pass back into my life like nothing happened.

Friday I’m seeing the contractor, who I know I’ve written about but never named. We had such a great first date and then he proved to not be ready, just like Bruce. He’s in the midst of sorting out a divorce with his ex-wife, and its ugly.

He doesn’t text much, and every time I delete our text history from my phone he pops up a week or two later. It happened again today. He helped me with a few house questions and kept me laughing. He invited me over and I said no, I had to get mentally ready for work.

But we set a date for Friday.

So yes, in theory, I could have a date with a different guy every weekday night this week. It’s an anomaly. I’d bet Dan won’t follow up, Tony will flake, and something will happen with the Contractor’s kids.

But it still made me laugh that even in my quiet times, I manage to have a (theoretically) fully booked week.

23 thoughts on “I’m not sure how much “space” I’ve actually created

  1. I was going to comment on your last, since you asked for thoughts. But I didn’t because ‘god Ferns, just shut up!’. Also because my thoughts didn’t answer your question (no, you’re not a douchebag).

    Short story is this from an outside observer (maybe I’ve said this before, who knows): You allow men to treat you poorly and you justify it because REASONS.

    You do this even with men who you don’t care about.

    It’s a pattern that I think you see and then you justify/excuse/reason your way around why that’s okay with you (‘oh, I don’t care about him anyway’ or ‘it was just curiosity’ etc).

    I guess you get something out of it, and I guess you don’t expect better, but it seems to me that it will (and does) get under your skin in a ‘big picture’ sense, but you still never do anything different.

    Seriously, you asked a dude who was harassing you if it was okay if you went to sleep now? Fuck that guy! (and yes, I DO know there was some snarky sarcasm in there, but you STILL RANG HIM OMG WHYYYY? (I think that’s now my trademark when I comment here: WHYYYYY?! *laugh*).

    So from an outside perspecitve, I see that you self reflect the shit out of things, but you repeat patterns that just seem so… pointless? Not ‘destructive’, but I don’t know… that will slide you into badness? I’ve no doubt you have the smarts and fortitude to avoid too far a slide, but I just don’t understand why you give the douches (gentleman or not) the time of day. Maybe you don’t feel it wearing you down, but it does and will.

    Ferns

    • Yeah Ferns, I felt exactly the same about that part of the post- I’d have told that guy to get lost hours ago! NO ONE keeps me awake, and I would certainly never ask for permission…

      • On that one small note – asking for permission was sarcasm on my part. Probably should have said it. I was pissed off and he knew it.

        It doesn’t change Fern’s point but since you noted it as well I wanted to clarify.

    • Ferns, you’re absolutely right. And I think you’ve highlighted for me why I sometimes wobble about whether I’ve made any progress. I know I have… but it’s all relative.

      I haven’t written about this in a long while, so since you asked “WHYYYY” (lol), here goes…

      I am absolutely a product of classic daddy issues. Emotionally absent, physically absent at a key time post parental split (and if that sounds familiar, yes, exactly what my ex did), my Father was the kind of man who never told me he loved me. I never knew I was good enough, despite all the things I achieved. He’s a very different man now and has been for many years, but the mold was set when I was young.

      When I was much younger, I sought out a lot of male attention, had sex far too early, and focussed far more on male needs than my own.

      I married my ex-husband even though he wasn’t right for me, I and knew it. I’d even vocalized it to my Mom. He also wasn’t kind to me. Due to alcohol and anxiety / depression, there was emotional abuse at times. Yet I was with him for 15 years.

      The sheer fact that I’ve been able to break up with any man who really likes me, to walk away from any of the guys I meet, to delete them from my phone… this is HUGE.

      So those things I look at and say “yay progress”. It’s really good for me. BUT… of course, it’s also a journey. With men, especially with men who are distant in one way or another (see: Daddy Issues), it still goes against every fibre in my being to say NOPE. To be angry, to fight back, or walk away.

      I suppose yes, my “reasons” are the things I tell myself to justify what I know intellectually is true: they aren’t worth my time or energy.

      Deleting everyone from my phone recently was a great thing. Not going back online is positive too. Four years ago I allowed men into my world that I would never engage with now. With each thing I’ve done along this front, I’m building myself up. I’m breaking old patterns and resetting my default response.

      But I have a ways to go still. Someone like Gregory, who I know with complete certainly was a liar and manipulator, I still moped about. Yes, I’m far too diplomatic in the face of a guy I’ve been dating for 3 months asking me questions he shouldn’t. Etcetera.

      And yes, you’re right… I wasn’t actually asking permission, it was sarcasm. Dan went too far in not hearing what I was asking – it was a first for him. He hasn’t apologized, which is not okay with me.

      The key for me, is making my “not okay” actually translate into action.

      As always, I appreciate your insight. xo

  2. Ditto Ferns. She said a lot of relevant things for your consideration. And I do think you engage “too much” with men who don’t deserve your time or politeness. I never considered that point though that it can and will wear you down at some point, but that it a very interesting point.

    My first instinct of Dan is that he “likes” knowing about your dating life and those details that I think are inappropriate for ANY man to ask you, unless you’re both ultra casual, know each other well, and in an open relationship (that last word the key operative word here). I think he’s into hearing that stuff because it’s a turn on for him, and for me personally – at this stage is a major red flag this early on. He needs to go, go, go! Pushy males with too many questions can easily become something you’ll need a restraining order for. (Sorry for the bluntness, but it’s a keen instinct I have about certain behaviors.)

    I fully expected to see Tony on this list of dates for the week. That’s no surprise. And, the broken record in me is going to say it again I also know your head is in the right place with this, finally. (So I have little concern for your well-being.)

    Thank God for Lewis. This relationship is what it is and by God it’s glorious. Every. Single. Time. 🙂

    As for the home stuff – it HAS been brutal where I live and so far so good with the home mechanicals. I’m impressed at your abilities to fix stuff. It’s something I occasionally aspire to, when something needs to be done that I generally leave for Todd because he’s good at it… but there’s the other part of me that says, “you can do this! Learn how!” and the darker part that whispers, “someday you may need to know and have no one to help.”

    • I replied to Ferns, and completely agreed with her. Provided some context as to the “why”.

      Dan has said it’s a bit of a kink for him, he also appreciates my honesty, but this time he went too far. He wants to be in a relationship with me and I keep telling him until we actually have something stable and consistent, I’m not considering it. Instead of asking me what I suspect he wanted to know – whether Zane is on a different relationship track than he is – he asked a bunch of other questions.

      I’m not worried about a restraining order with him, at all.

      I’m fine with Tony. I have some things I’d like to understand with where he’s at, and some things I need to say. We’ll see how that goes.

      YES – LEWIS. Amazing.

      Despite all my fuck-ups in the dating arena, I’m pretty independent… and I like being able to do things for myself. It bugs me when I can’t figure something out. So fixing all that stuff is a point of pride for me, and I also think it sets a very good example for Liam. He needs to see an independent, strong woman who doesn’t need to call a guy to save her.

      I’ll help you if you ever get to that point. Most of this shit is super easy… shhhh.

  3. Re: all that has been brought up with Ferns’ comment, I relate to Anne and how “curiosity” can keep me hooked into a situation that is by all accounts injurious just because I want to know how it will resolve, or I am fascinated to see how crazy-acting the other person will be. When I was involved with someone who was dating over ten women at once but refused to admit it, it just fascinated me how crazy he would let things get, how much he was gaslighting himself as well as the people around him…. but in the process, I let myself get treated like shit. “Oh, I am just wearing the white labcoat observing the monkey in his natural environment, collecting evidence and anecdotes that I can then share with my shrink and my close circle,” but in the process, I let myself get run over. What I forget is how crazy-acting I am being by putting up with crappy behavior. I try really really really hard not to do this anymore.

    • Curiosity gets me in trouble too, as you know! But yes, while intellectually I may be satisfied, it doesn’t feel good on other levels. I’m glad to hear you try not to do this anymore. I don’t think it’s ultimately all that good for you (or me).

          • For those of us unfamiliar with DIY projects, the toilet can be a safe place to start. The parts are inexpensive, the tools are common place and easily obtained, there are may videos on the internet to help us through the process. Its a great confidence builder. An additional benefit is how repairing a defiant toilet elevates us in the eye of people we care about. I remember the first toilet I fixed many, many years ago. My dear wife was so proud of me you would have thought I had saved the world. I miss her. Thanks for the link, Ann. I enjoyed reading it. Good luck on your next project.
            wayne

  4. With the exception of all your household problems( so sorry, but I admire you for fixing a few on your own!)I must say…. I Love it! 😊

    Ohhhh- I got to be More like You!

    Have Fun!

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