It’s not about me.

A couple of months ago I’d connected with Bruce again. Probably because I’d texted to see how he was doing. He suggested we get together and then cancelled that day due to a change in his child schedule. It told me nothing had changed with him and there was no point in trying.

We exchanged no texts afterwards. But feeling magnanimous, I sent him a Merry Christmas and happy holidays text. He didn’t reply. Ever.

So in the last purge I sent him a goodbye text. I said I wasn’t sure why he didn’t reply, but I didn’t want to bother him and guessed he may be seeing someone else (it didn’t fit for me that he didn’t reply at all and realized perhaps he didn’t want to tell me).

I told him I had a dating story about us published in a local newspaper and would share it if he wanted to read it. It was the story of me mistakenly calling his wife. I said I wished him the best. Did I need to send it? Nope. But I did.

I then deleted him from my address book, my recents (sidebar: I found men in my recents I haven’t been in touch with for over four years. Recent, my ass!), and WhatsApp. It took a few tries to completely get him out of my phone. I didn’t want to have a weak moment again and reach out – I figured he’d made his lack of interest very clear.

I moved on.

At work yesterday I noticed a bunch of WhatsApp notifications. It didn’t say who they were from, because my phone didn’t know. I figured it was the group chat I have with my brother and others where it’s common for me to have 47 unread messages if they’ve been debating the merits of a certain restaurants saag paneer.

Later when I opened it I saw the following:

Hey Ann sorry
No you’re not bothering me
I would block you if that was the case
Just been dealing with a lot of shit …
I’ve been really …. I don’t know
Depressed I guess is the best way to put it
I mean just being brought to tears for …. no real reason… while at work
Laying in bed at home …
Try to put on a good face for the kids but …. it’s been tough
And …. I don’t know I became a recluse.
Thanks for thinking of me.
Ps it always make me feel horrible when we try to get together and something always comes up… like seriously
I hate that
You have been nothing short of wonderful
And I feel like shit and end up ignoring people because I have nothing positive going on so it’s easier to keep that to myself.
Hope you are well sweetie
And yes if you send me the link to your story …
I’d love to read it
Can’t imagine it’s too positive lol
Ps
That was the first ” booty call” I was ever offered
And yet couldn’t man up

It was Bruce.

I responded that it was nice to hear from him and I was sorry he was going through such a rough time. I knew from prior discussions he suffered from anxiety and depression, and I know how debilitating it can be from my relationship with Will.

He said he’d like to see me. He’s been the funny and sarcastic guy I liked so much. We have plans set for later this week and I’m not holding my breath. Even if we do see each other, I have no illusions it will be anything more than a one-time thing.

But at least it’s nice to know it wasn’t about me, at all.

Zane wants children

When he wants children, and I don’t.

Zane and I have seen each other several times since we met at the party a few weeks ago. He wanted to see me again as quickly as possible, so we snuck in a short drink date the next day before I got Liam for the week. I liked him as much one-on-one as in the party atmosphere.

He is soft-spoken and very articulate. While he says he’s an old man inside and is worldly, he’s clearly in his mid-thirties. He asked me for advice on my work success and I died a little inside: it’s not the kind of relationship dynamic I’m looking for.

He’s told me how beautiful he thinks I am and marvels at how captivated he is. But he has none of the creepy clinger vibe of John. He’s not in love with love. In contrast, he tells me he’s picky and I believe him.  Continue reading

Finding peace in my analytical mind.

Even when I’m super busy with work like I am right now, my brain seems to whirr in the background, trying to analyze and solve puzzles.

For example, was it really possible a reader who I don’t know in real life, could have known a man I was dating and recognized him from my writing?

Well, the answer is YES. And now I know who. Continue reading

I am vulnerable and off-kilter

In the absence of knowing exactly how I was “outed”, I feel extraordinarily vulnerable. I’ve contemplated several times this week making my blog private for a while, so I can figure out what to do.

It doesn’t help to see a comment in my spam filter which says (caps theirs): “WHEN YOU FUCK OTHER WOMENS HUSBANDS BEHIND THEIR BACKS EXPECT YOUR RELATIONSHIPS TO GET FUCKED WITH TOO”

Thanks to the reader who chose the username “YOU KNOW WHAT YOU DID” to leave that gem for me.  Continue reading

The dirty poet.

The man who referred to himself as a poet peppered his texts with “you’re such a little sweetheart” and sunflower emojis. When we met at a downtown bar for an after-work drink, my first thought was he might be bisexual. He had that way about him.

He’s in his mid-fifties and after ending his 25-year marriage, he got a tattoo, a nipple ring, and earrings in both ears. He’s in the film industry in an artistic role.

When I departed that first date, he stayed seated on the barstool, we hugged and he gave me what I would call a quick peck on the lips. Later, he professed via text how excited that kiss got him. He said he felt a spark.

Huh?  Continue reading

Men who work with their hands.

I was fed up with the bullshit of recent events. It got so bad, my personal trainer, hearing a new disaster or story every week, asked me if I played the lottery because my luck was so bad with men it had to be good elsewhere.

So one recent night, bolstered with a bit of liquid courage, I said “fuck this shit”. If I really wanted someone in my life, I needed to seriously get back in the game. I had opened my Bumble profile a few weeks prior and it was lackluster so far – quite literally, nothing to write about.

I already had open profiles on Coffee Meets Bagel and the League, both which took about 5 minutes of effort each day to say whether I liked the one or two men they served up, and yielded absolutely nothing.  Continue reading

No, you’re not going crazy.

Edit: I removed the ability to make comments on this post. Given what was being said, it’s the kind of commentary I didn’t want my friend to have to read – one reason I didn’t post the whole story in the first place. I was angry, but I’ve moved past it. Life is too short and friendships are too valuable. I know you’ll understand.

::

Some of you may have seen a notification of a post called “Well that was a bad idea.” You’re not crazy. But it was published and taken down within a matter of minutes. It was a mistake.

It doesn’t happen often that I elect to take down posts – in fact, only twice in the history of my blog. When I was breaking up with fellow blogger Johnny Id I steadfastly refused to do anything but post it all here. We met as bloggers, he knew I wrote about everything, and I prioritized my need to keep this space as my own, with my truth, over keeping it private between us.  It was divisive and ugly.

There’s a difference between knowing the truth and seeing it shared publicly.

However, the story of Ali / Sevag / HWSNBN was removed because I was quite literally being threatened. My personal safety was in question and as much as I wanted to keep the story up, it wasn’t worth the risk.

This time, the thing that is a risk is a friendship, and ultimately, as much as I wrote a post that I think is balanced and fair, and is from my perspective, there’s a friend on the other end.

So what the fuck happened,? I met that guy for a coffee date. It was amazing: the aftermath wasn’t. Turns out I shouldn’t go on dates where there are blurred lines between the guy and one of my friends. I should have known better. So it’s done with him.

#clusterfuck

When attraction is timeless.

Claude rang the buzzer many flights down in our apartment building with no lift. He’s fit but it still took him a while to get up all of the stairs. He looked exactly as I expected. Yes, twenty years older, but the man I remembered. We greeted with kisses on each cheek and a lingering hug.

He said hello to Liam, who was distracted with his iPad. Claude and I went upstairs: he’d brought snacks and drinks. He was a good caregiver the few days and evenings we spent together. As independent as I am, I like a man who has the right balance of respecting me as an equal and knowing when I need water or proactively ordering me a glass of cava.  Continue reading

Trying to relax with Bruce.

Thankfully, it wasn’t over after sex with Bruce on the second date. We exchanged a few texts as he drove home – an almost hour-long drive – and he called me “sweetie” when he texted goodnight. But I still had dating anxiety.

The next morning I sent a good morning text and we had a brief exchange. Mid-morning he checked in to say he hoped I was having a good day. We had another exchange at the end of the day. All consistent with the days prior.

That night I was at a sporting event with a close friend. A man who reminds me a bit of Bruce, actually, and Bruce and I bantered off and on throughout the game. I asked whether he was used to a woman squirting since he seemed pretty chill about it. Continue reading

He’s a lying sack of shit.

Jack and I spoke last week midweek. I’m not sure I will ever speak to him again.

He’d asked for a copy of the dating story about us I’d written for a local paper. We’d had a brief text exchange in which he said “you can text me anytime”, to which I replied given he was so bad at responding with any speed it didn’t make me want to text him. He said he was in therapy and was learning that not replying was a form of control for him.

I called him because I didn’t want my reply to be spread out over the course of several days. I said my issue was that a lack of response was inconsiderate and disrespectful. He sounded like crap. I asked if the therapy was helping and he said he’d had only two sessions so far. He said he’d talked to his ex-girlfriend which helped him process things, but she had little time for it because she had already worked through it. Shocker. Continue reading