Guest Column: Dating Online Series. A Secular Mass in Three Movements. The Prelude…by Ms. Jennifer

So much has happened. Perhaps metaphorically these past couple months could be seen as three separate movements of one composition. The First Movement is a Prelude: A Spiraling Sex Life; The next column or Second Movement is about Death and the final column in the composition or the Third Movement is about a New Beginning. 

First Movement. The Prelude: A Spiraling Sex Life

Promise has a religious overtone. My promise is, I don’t and won’t make this shit up. Let me work my way backwards. It’s late summer. I returned from meeting Reno. He thought he was a man’s man, whatever that means.  He was very enthusiastic which should have been a red flag, well, it was a red flag.  He wanted my phone number, wanted to meet…. ok, we only started texting and within 24 hours he wanted more. But I needed to get out of the house and, well, it was some adult company.   How exciting I could talk to someone who would say more than “HELP,” (referring to my dad).

Now I realized there was always a chance he wouldn’t show up, but I was prepared. I decided to bring my dog since she needed a walk and that way, if he didn’t show up, she would still get her walk.  My dog is a special needs dog.  She’s not the easiest to deal with (dog aggressive), but she’s had a hard life.  She was one of those homeless people’s dogs.   She was pimped out for money.  Not a dog who could roam free in her back yard or could always count on having food in her bowl.  Like a human being this sorta trauma doesn’t just go away when her life one day becomes easier.   A couple weeks ago I found out she had cancer and for the last few weeks been dealing with that.  I took her to a second vet to see if the cancer had spread.  I don’t know exactly how old she is, but she’s old, still I can’t deal with losing her.  I mean as much as I can’t deal with my life and am tired of the overwhelming responsibility of it…the never-ending shit detail (man and beast) I also know that dad and dog are my foundation, they give me a purpose. 

I think more and more about how co-dependent I am.  I don’t know who I am outside of my relationships.  It’s a bit of a catch 22.  I need the time and space to “date myself,” but like having an infant, I never know when I’m going to have time and space.  I love/hate the feeling of being needed. Somewhere along the way I learned to earn my keep.  Maybe that’s part of the bullshit lie I tell myself like I have to earn some sort of heavenly rewards or good girl points that I can store up like frequent flier miles.  I think the biggest things in having this responsibility is it helps ward off the loneliness.  It’s a paradox, because part of the time I absolutely love my freedom and can’t imagine having to compromise anymore and, at the same time, I long for an intimate partner.

Back to meeting Reno.  I tell him I appreciate his enthusiasm cause the boy wants to meet.  He works as an engineer and gets off at 3:30 and he actually follows up after work, but I’m not free.  I’m busy and ambivalent.  Eventually we agree to meet at a park only 12 mins from my house.  The dog is antsy.  My dad wakes up and I feed him, but the clock is ticking.  Quick 30 second shower and Nola and I hop in the car.   I call him.  He’s REAL.  Of course, I could get there and he’s a no show.   

Nola and I arrive and there is NO ONE at the park.   I text him and he tells me he’s coming despite my telling him I would be there in 12 mins.  I start walking NOLA glad I brought her just in case I’ve been stood up, but then he magically appears.  He looks like his photo tall, dark and handsome.  Oh, this could be good?   He’s rather soft spoken as I listen for his promised French accent.  I don’t hear it.  I ask him and he tells me his dad is Turkish and his mother is French.  We begin our walk around the park and slowly begin the dance.  I’m wearing a mask, he is not. 

He suggests we sit on the park bench.  I sit down and he tells me to take off my mask.  He says, “let’s French kiss.”   I tell him no.  Okay, here we go.  He tells me I have nice legs and gently runs his fingers down my bear arm.  On cue, Nola jumps up between us on the park bench and foils Reno’s plans.  I want to say I thought you liked dogs, cause clearly, he’s not amused, like I am, about my dog sitting between us.  Maybe Nola figured I needed a chaperon.  Now in case there’s any doubt in my mind about what this guy is after he suggests we “go back to his place and have some wine.”  And just in case he doesn’t understand my profile which says I’m not looking for a hook up, I tell him no.  

He tells me he’s looking to “date.”   I guess he knows that’s better than saying “looking to fuck.”   Anyway, Nola won’t quiet down.  Maybe she can smell his bullshit or perhaps she’s picking up on my nerves.   Reno is and tells me “you seem nervous.”   It’s true.  I’m attracted to him, but he’s too focused on his agenda which seems all about getting laid.   But his touch is very gentle and sensual, not aggressive like the rest of him.

It’s starting to get dark and Nola needs to burn off some of her energy.  I suggest another walk around the park, but he tells me he’ll wait on the bench.  I get up assuming he’s watching me walk in my form fitting dress, but after a second I have the distinct feeling he’s going to ditch me.  Maybe I should have played the lottery, because when I circle around and get close enough to see the bench…it’s empty.

Well, at least my intuition skills are getting sharper.  I’m reading this book, “Letting Go” which talks about really working through your feelings and not getting lost in the brain talk and I figure this will be good practice, but first I have to text him:

“That was rude. You could of, just said goodbye and that would be the end of it.”  

Now, I’m in the car at a stop light.

I’m not done.  I’m wondering if I express myself if it will help me “let go?”

“Actually, I take that back I should be thanking you for showing me who you are because on the surface you seem like a really nice guy with a sweet, gentle touch.   How do you say goodbye in Turkish?”

There is a small part of me that still likes this game.   Like chess, will he make a move?   

I get home and am trying to practice what I’m learning in this thoughtful book, but my brain is doing all the talking and I realize all the crazy brain activity is a good distraction for avoiding my feelings.  I try and tune into how I feel so I don’t repress it… like the book advises by diving deep into the feelings without any filters.   I feel annoyed.   Angry?   More like what the fuck is wrong with men.  Why is treating woman like shit so common place.  Or is it the mismatching on the dating sites? It’s sad? 

I pull up in front of my house and plan to “un-match” him when I get in the house, but it will remove our conversation.  I can’t help myself and write “you thought you were going to get laid.   lol!  Good luck.”   I’m sure “Letting Go” doesn’t talk about doing that in chapter 10 (which in my defense I haven’t read yet) that must be why I’m fucking this up. lol.

Then he responds.  He tells me he lives in one of the houses across the street and he went to put his laundry in the dryer, so I actually disappeared on him!   

Then he starts in on how I shouldn’t bring my “untrained and smelly dog” on a date.

I suppose I should have simply unmatched him, but I guess part of me likes the tennis match.

“No, you could have texted me or waited until I got back to tell me you’d be right back.”   So, he doesn’t seduce me, I, on the other hand, bullshit myself.  My co-dependent ass needs to “educate” him or teach him something.   How’s that for a fat case of delusion? 

He tells me to come back.

Not happening.

He calls me on the phone.

I don’t answer.

Well, at least now he’s on the run. But not to apologize, no, he tells me “I looked like I wanted sex, but I was just nervous.”

Maybe this guy is used to seducing woman with his handsome, chiseled face while feeding them a line or two of his sweet bullshit?  Is that all it takes? 

You shouldn’t have brought a dog for a date.” Wait, somehow, I’m being punished because I brought my dog with me?

“It wasn’t a “date” it was a walk in the park and a meet and greet.  Had we gone on a date I wouldn’t have brought my dog.  You need to be more flexible and understanding because of my situation (I told him about my dad, and he asked how I have sex!).  And mostly you just shouldn’t have disappeared.  That’s the part that ended any possibility of meeting you again.  Besides you wanna fuck and I want more than that.”

“Ok” and then he un-matches me on Tinder.

Au Revoir.

Then being the good co-dependent that I am I wonder if I’m being too harsh.  Maybe I should give him a second chance.  Then I think “thank God I’m in therapy.”   I always think about “potential” or “possibility.”  Instead of thinking if this is how he deals with things by justifying his shitty behavior how is that going to change if I go out with him again?  

Then there is Davis.   At least he’s upfront but being honest is not enough.   

He’s told me he likes to dominate. Okay, I like surrendering to a man or at least I have to work on being able to do that, but I also want a female dominated relationship/sex. I’m being fed a reasonable dose of it from a dear friend who has sent me stories about cuckold relationships, and I keep responding with the same question:  “Where are these men?” The men I meet think with their dick and certainly aren’t about deferring to any woman in or out of the bedroom.

Like Mr. 45 who asks me after a quick fuck (before the run) what it is I want sexually.   I think it comes down to time and voice, but he’s always busy and needs to run and his touch can be rough and urgent.  Once his dick is activated, he’s all business.  It’s not easy for me to say (or know?) what I want and feeling rushed isn’t going to help.  So, I tried to tell him what I want, but I didn’t feel finished so after he leaves, I sent him a long text about wanting sex without an agenda.  I try and address both wanting more from him and reminding him, because of his lack of availability, I’m seeking it elsewhere.  

His response: “you’re loco.”   

That’s a good way to shut down a conversation.  

But I know he doesn’t like me dating others so that’s probably why I reminded him, so I don’t feel “bad” about seeing Davis (he calls to check up on me, when I’m on another date).  The double standard is alive and well.   First, Davis told me he wanted to causally date, but then he started talking about “loyalty”, so I was confused.  Davis had been very attentive (he offered to go to the vet with me) after our first date.

He waited on me after THREE attempts to meet because my caregiver kept not showing up because his “shoulder hurt” or he was “tired.”   I can’t fire the caregiver either because the VA takes over a month to assign a new agency.  For our second date he asks me what I want to do. He lives in the French Quarter, so I suggested we walk and talk. But he had a better idea instead, he asks me to pick up lunch and come to his place.  Just getting out the door was a coup for me and the last thing I want to do is pick up his lunch. This was starting to feel more like a hassle than fun.  I also didn’t want him thinking my coming to his apartment meant I was ready to fuck him.  As I approached his place, I felt more anxious than excited.

But Davis was the gentleman offering me water and sitting at a social distance on the couch.  It’s didn’t take long before we were discussing this idea of us dating, but our “laying a foundation of friendship with trust, honesty and loyalty!   We should know that our dependence on each other is paramount, knowing I will never hurt or disrespect you, and that I feel the same with regards to you.”  

“You’ve wished for someone like me, here I am, delivered.”  These were the emails he had sent me prior to my arriving at his doorstep.  Too good to be true?  Yes.  Not surprisingly “dating” meant fucking other women and there were, in fact, other women.  Okay, that could work I could date him while not having to give up Mr. 45, but wait a minute there was one little catch. He was allowed to have a small harem, but I was to be loyal only to him.

Uh?

But “that’s a double standard,” I protested

He didn’t deny it, but it’s the way things worked for him otherwise we could be “friends.” I told him I would think about it, but already knew my answer.  He mentioned watching “Sister Wife’s” and I had to confess I had watched it as well, but the one thing they never talk about on that show is why there aren’t any woman with multiple husbands.  I asked Davis if he had trouble scheduling his lady friends like what if there was a wedding and it was someone’s birthday what would he do, and he simply said he doesn’t schedule his life like one lady on Monday and another on Wednesday.

Davis told me he didn’t want to get hurt and I understood that, but why should I put all my eggs in his basket because I was just as afraid of getting hurt.  

“I get the insurance policy (if you will), but if you have that benefit, I would want it as well.   As I explained I put all my eggs in my last relationship basket while he didn’t, and I don’t want to repeat that….”

He was offering more than sex, but I knew if I was monogamous with him that my energy would be with him and how was I going to meet someone else?   Beside he wasn’t offering the advantages of Sister Wife’s.   I was going home to take care of myself and I wasn’t going to have any “sisters.”   If I could get beyond the jealous I could actually potentially ?? see the benefits of sharing something so intimate with other women, but from the sounds of it I wasn’t going to know these women.  In fact, he was already being vague about just how many women there were… so he was going to control everything and, well, I was tired of that.

Mr. 45 has told me I’m in charge if I gave up the pussy or not, but I reminded him that it’s his body and if, for example, I wanted to stick a finger up his ass I needed permission.  I also reminded him that he generally comes over after work without notice and his being vague and non-committal is a way of keeping control. I keep trying to reclaim control of my time/life in a land of Covid, and dementia, and the men I am meeting. 

I sent Davis a text the next morning and he got back to me that night.  I said I would love to be friends with him without the sex and see if either one of us moved from our position. I didn’t hold out much hope.   We haven’t talked since and I’m not surprised.  I will probably reach out to him again at some point, but prior to all this I was hearing from him-everyday.  He knows how to be a boyfriend and that’s why he gets women to sign up and honestly, I would have been down for that, but I just couldn’t deal with the double standard.  Hell, maybe I would have been fine sharing him and not needing another boyfriend, but he wasn’t willing to let me find out.  It’s okay to know yourself and be honest, but you also have to take into consideration your potential partner’s needs and that’s where he fell short.   He was about protecting himself, without consideration of what I wanted. I ask again where the hell are these “female dominated” relationships?  Sigh.

Anyway, Swipe.

Funny, this week I heard back from two different guys I went on a “one and done” with.   Not sure why they have re-surfaced, but I realize I’ve changed.  I’m either more cynical or simply more content being on my own, because I’m rather ho hum about the whole thing.  Once upon a time, I was so much more invested and eager.  Anyway, got to go and walk the dog and then get ready for a date.