Dating is the cruelest of sports: An open letter to the man who ghosted

I am crushed that I am reduced to emailing you what I am about to say, but I feel I need to nonetheless.

I am torn between two warring thoughts about what has happened between us.

On the one hand, I think you are cruel to treat me this way; on the other, perhaps I am a roaring asshole and deserve it.

I have poured over ever sentence, every touch between us that night in an attempt to figure out what I did to cause you to react in such a way to me.  Should I have not blown you under the bridge?  Been so eager to accept your invitation to brunch?  Was it because I wanted to hear you cum?  Because I wrapped my hands around your beautiful neck?  Or perhaps it was when I urged you to suck harder on my nipples.  No, maybe it’s because I used my vibrator?

Or, what my darkest voice suggests to me, it’s simply because I am a person of no value and so of course the beautiful, young man who had spent an evening (plus nearly 4 weeks) whispering sweet nothings into my ear would toss me aside like yesterday’s garbage, today’s biggest regret, because I am worthless.  That is what the dark voice in me says.

This is what I am wrestling with, because surely that can’t be true, and no one could possibly deserve to be tossed aside like that, right?  You have decided to do this; I didn’t bring it upon myself.  For only a matter of hours before you thought I was incredible and told me so. We made plans for Saturday and even Sunday morning.  You talked about taking me camping some time and teaching me to appreciate whiskey.

If I did misstep then why wouldn’t you say, Hy, you hurt my feelings or I didn’t like that so much.  Or even, Hy, I’ve had a change of heart.  At the very least, Hey, I need to talk.  That’s the man I thought you were.

When I have suddenly pulled way from someone it was because the sex was horrendously bad (I remember you saying it was the best – or did I imagine that in my own repulsive brain??) or because he assaulted me (I watched you closely as you closed your eyes and moaned and gripped me tightly, but perhaps you didn’t want to do the things we did) and even then the next day when that sad man would text me and notice a shift in me I would tell him I was no longer interested.  I was humane.

Why, why would you turn away from me like you have in such a heartless manner and leave me to spin in emotional turmoil flipping between rage and sorrow and worry??  Rage at your treatment of me, my sorrow – and humiliation – at being so soundly rejected, and worry that you might be hurt.

I mean, what if you’re in a coma and I would seem like a terrible fool for assuming you’ve done anything to me.  But I am a realist and the most reasonable way to approach this is to assume the answer is the simplest and that is that you have had a change of heart, not that you are injured.

August, I know we only knew each other for a handful of weeks, but I trusted you.  I breathed your breath and tasted your skin and I let myself go with you in both mind and body, beneath you and atop of you, and you have disappeared on me.  Not only that, but I spent hours upon hours of my valuable time writing to you and thinking of you.  How is it that I now find myself in this position?  Why would you do this?

I don’t expect an answer — seeing as you have made what seems to be your final move here with me — but I wanted you to know how it has affected me, someone you held close and who trusted you.  I was so filled with hope about you.

If I did something to hurt you I am eternally sorry, truly; you were like a beautiful beast crossing my path even if for a short time and my days were filled with excitement and hope because of you.  I’m only sorry it’s ending in so much pain and confusion.

– Hy

And yet, as horrible as it may sound, I hope you actually are hurt rather than the alternative because I don’t want any of this to be happening right now.  I wanted to know you for a very long time.  x

I’m waiting nervously.

I never get nervous about first dates, but here I am, battling a fluttering gut and palpitating heart.

In less than 20 minutes he’ll round the corner and I will feel his arms around me as we hug hello.  I will get to fill my nostrils with his scent and feel the vibrations of his own nerves through my fingertips.

I’ve strategically placed my purse on the seat so he must sit as close to me as possible.  I don’t think he will mind.

The hotel lounge fragrance is both sweet and decadent and the staff are politely chatting with one another as bottles clink and ice is scooped.  A gentle, pulsing melody floats overhead.

I’ve shaved my legs and even my pussy, but didn’t wash my hair.  It’s my way to syche out the Universe.  Or confuse it.  I don’t know what I want with this young man tonight.  

All I know is that if I had not shaved my overgrown snatch, he absolutely for sure would have ended up with his face buried in it later.  

I’m on a man diet. For real.

I have purged my life of all the unnecessary noise of men pawing at my door and am only allowing one knock at a time.

After indulging the nihilistic Hyacinth a couple of weekends ago I completely wiped the slate clean.  I got rid of men around the world and at my doorstep.  I stopped engaging with anyone who might not turn into a real life option for love.  I had to realize my own despair while abandoned in a brightly lit hallway to accept my loneliness for what it’s become: overwhelming.

I have made false connections with too many for too long.  So what if we have light, witty banter for a week?  So what if he’s hot?  So what if he’s into me?  And secondly, how do I know anything about this person – beyond those superficial things – in only a week or two that would warrant me giving them my time?  A piece of myself?

Realizing the truth of my “connections” with these men, this false intimacy, has made my decision-making easier than ever before.  I see the Matrix of Dating suddenly and am swiping the bullshit aside like a curtain blocking my view.   I can’t expect something real from something temporary.  No rose will grow from granite, so why would I expect it to?

My diet from men means I’m making healthier choices, not that I have stopped eating sugar – er – men altogether.  Right now I’m nibbling on only one man and though he might not be the healthiest option my approach is sound, the landing should be good.  At least my therapist thinks so.

I haven’t written about him before; he’s young – 14 years younger than me – tall, handsome, fit, hung, submissive, financially secure. sexy, flirty, filthy, engaged in what we’re doing, open and open-minded, not allergic to cats, politically aligned with me, doesn’t want biological children, intelligent, attentive and… lives with his girlfriend of 6 years in a non-hierarchical polyamory relationship.  His other girlfriend of two years lives in her own little poly pod 2 hours away.

And despite the girlfriends, I am extremely excited about him because my choices have been thoughtful and I am applying great restraint to let this unfold gently, naturally.  I want the intimacy to be real.  I also don’t know that the girlfriends will be a problem.  I’ve never tried to date a poly guy before.  Maybe I won’t care; maybe they’ll make it better for us.

Things have been different from the start.  I insisted on corresponding via email and waited at least 5000 words a piece before I used the number he gave me to text.  I made it clear that texting was not for days long conversations that could be had in 30 mins over the phone, but for flirting and possibly pics.  Due to his age, he had a slight aversion to speaking on the phone, but he carved out a little time over the weekend to chat and it was sweet and lovely and I appreciated the effort immensely.  He surprised himself with enjoying it as much as he did (seriously, what is wrong with Milennials – and even some of us Gen Xers – that a phone call feels too intimate when you’re trying to date someone???).  I could have invited him over 10 times during a rainstorm this weekend, but I refrained, and instead set a date two weeks away.  I want to be certain he’s worth my time.

Now we wait eagerly each day for the other’s email and text little mailbox emojis when the deed is done in between sizzling hot pics and sweet chatter perfect for text.

I still check the pots to see if anything interesting has been caught, but ultimately throw them all back in.  No one compares to this glowing young man of summer.  In fact, one man on OKC who spoke to me in lengthy nonsensical, look how funny I am with words! guy just cut me loose because I hadn’t responded to him since Friday.  That’s how most of us should be, actually.   Truth is, I wasn’t interested, which is why I forgot to check my email there.  Sorry, dude, but you did the right thing.

My diet feels like clean eating for my heart.  I love the quiet, I love that Peyton has more of my attention, I love that when my phone chimes I know it’s someone I actually want to chat with, I love that my time is well spent, and most of all I love that this feels right.

I might still be eating bread and brie – a leftover from my time in France – but I’m also hitting the gym four times a week; I feel good.  My Man Diet is similar: I’m making good decisions, but with some indulgences thrown in here and there, judiciously and with care.  Just like any good diet that can be stuck to for the long term it can’t be all about deprivation.  It also has to feel good.