I don’t know how to date.

One thing’s become very clear to me over the last few years of my life: I don’t know how to make a man into a boyfriend.

I can date all day long.  Like, meet men, go out, have sex, rinse, repeat.  I know how to have lively and fun first dates and mad, writhing, hot sex.  I can do days and days of witty texting banter and suggestive jokes in person.  But “dating” as in multiples of all of that strung together over time which includes intimacy and vulnerability?  Um… not so much.

I live within a conundrum and a proven fear of which I am finding extremely difficult to claw my way out.

First, the conundrum.  Sex is the vehicle through which I am intimate and can become more vulnerable and attached.  Therefore it is more important to me than just a physical release, it is my umbilical cord to my partner.  If the sex isn’t great, I am dead in the water; I have no way through which to connect and be expressive of my deeper feelings.  And before anyone pipes up to tell me to just be different, to focus on other things, let me just stop you.  I’ve tried.  I’m simply not wired that way.

I must have sex before there’s a deeper emotional connection because I know from experience that feelings alone won’t allow me to survive.  I loved my exhusband deeply, but our sex was lackluster, filled with his fear and timidity and my longing for more than what he could give.  It made me hate myself for needing more from him and him for being so afraid of it, us, and me.

I fuck so freely because I want to.  I’m 40, I’m in control of my sexuality, but I also fuck to find that mate, that elusive sexual partner who can understand me in the unspoken language of clashing hips and bruising penetration.  The Neighbor and I had it and it launched me into a place of emotional intimacy, the kind that everyone else seems to put first.  Too bad The Neighbor had nothing more to give me, but that’s besides the point.  I don’t think I’m doing anything wrong.  My cart just happens to be before the horse.

Enter, the fear.  The fear of not being sexually compatible, of never being able to reach my partner, to feel the things I need and crave to be alive and wondrous and alight with love.  My sex life with my exhusband was the antithesis of me.  It was chaste, sad, disconnected.  His libido was low to non-existent.  He once told me if he never had sex again he’d be ok.  That’s like telling a chef you’ll be happy eating Spaghetti O’s forever.

Six months into our relationship things went south.  I went to the gynecologist, talked to friends, read books.  But I loved him, so I trucked on with no regrets.  I remember the week I got pregnant with Peyton because it was the first time in possibly ever that we had sex three times in one week.  Then we didn’t again for many weeks and by then I was pregnant and I used my symptoms as an excuse to avoid it because all I wanted was to cry and run away to a dark corner of my heart every time we coupled.

My experience with him nearly wiped me out.  Our bad sex wasn’t the only factor in why I left, but it was a big one.  I felt empty, unloved, invisible.  Not unlike I feel now, though now I don’t have a husband and I can handle it.  Such is the single life.

I’ve had compelling conversations with people about how to mitigate the transience of the men of my life.  Slow down, be intimate first, wait.  Everyone is rooting for me to find that magic man who can see past all the sex into the woman who lies beneath, myself included, but ultimately I have to be me.  I am my own Litmus Test.  If a man uses me for sex, misunderstands my intentions, assumes I’m not worthy, believes I’m a sex toy, whatever, then ok.  He’s clearly not the man for me.

I have to believe that being me is the best and only way to be, otherwise I’m fucking fucked.  Who else am I supposed to be?

I’ve waited for emotions to percolate before having sex.  I’ve had sex hours after meeting someone.  There’s no equation to successfully turn a man into a boyfriend other than the both of us being in the right place at the right time and that’s the sad truth.  I’m not going to fleece myself and say, “Hy, if you only did this, or this, then he’d stick around!  If you didn’t put out until the 5th date then he’d for sure be there in the morning!” because I know that not to be true.  I don’t have that kind of control over other people.

I am genuine, I am open, and I am honest as I possibly can be.  I tell the men I meet that I don’t have a strategy to my life other than to enjoy myself.  I do what I want, but ultimately I want a partner, someone to be close with and to spend time with me and my kid.  Every man is told this and so far every man seems to hear instead, “It’s ok to fuck her and have no manners afterwards.  I don’t need to treat this woman like a human with feelings because she’s not ‘serious.’  Also, she’s going to get clingy, so best to show her what’s up now and be fuckboy distant.”

I have done everything I can possibly think of to ward off the mistreatment of me while still honoring my own drives and desires.  I’ve breezily explained my texting habits and wants, that I need a post-sex text or call, that I’d like to treat one another respectfully and Hey, if your feelings change about me, just lemme know.  I’ve also tried it the other way, the silent, read-between-the-lines way, the just be Super Chill Girl.  Wanna know what happened?  Same fucking thing: nothing.

And why? Because I’m having sex too early?  Because I lead with my sexuality?  Because I live in a society chock full of double standards?  Because I’m a shit person?  Because I said too much too soon??  No.  Because he isn’t the right man for me.  That’s all it is; it’s that fucking simple.  We’re not right for each other.

I get sad and worn out from finding so many wrong men, I’m only human, but these wrong fellas are stepping stones to finding the right one(s).  I’d never know unless I tried and am an eternal optimist, good, bad, or ugly.

This is a reminder to keep doing what I do, to hold my chin high and wipe the slate clean as soon as I’m treated in a way I find unacceptable.  No apologies.  There’s no excuse to not contact me after a fantastic date and hot first-time sex.  None.  There’s no excuse to ignore my texts for days when you were so eager to meet me in the first place.  There’s just no excuse for any of that, so that must mean he’s not the right man for me, but someone out there is and I’m going to keep looking.  Naked and fucking and all Hy.

Getting there.
Getting there.



A 40-something single mother who writes honestly about sex, body image, D/s, relationships, her nervous tics, and how much she loves to fucking fuck. She also likes to show you her tits.

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79 thoughts on “I don’t know how to date.
  1. All the yes to everything in your last paragraph. Like you I have always gone with sex first, always and without exception. If I felt even a hint of interest, curiosity, desire to do so that is…. Even with Michael, I landed in Philly, within the hour we were naked in a hotel room. I have never regretted any of them, even the ones that turned out to be shite or behaved liked dicks afterwards. That was their shit behaviour not mine.

    Be true to yourself Hy, you are a beautiful funny, sexy, intelligent, desirable woman. Always be her!

    Molly recently posted…Very Dirty GirlsMy Profile

    1. I’m glad I’m not the only one, Molly. It seems that this post has proven to some that my way is wrong and my continued frustration and sometimes hurt feelings prove it and therefore I have no one but myself to blame. I hope to one day find a love and connection such as yours and Michael’s. But you knew that already. xx Hy

  2. Totally agree with Molly. Do what you want to do. I couldn’t start getting involved with someone without knowing we were compatible in bed, no matter how nice they were.
    I’ve never really dated, most of mine have been either one nighters or ones where the sex was good enough to make up for not being so great in other departments, they didn’t last very long either.
    Dawn recently posted…HugMy Profile

  3. Well, you’ve read my story. I don’t think I have any solution for you. I too eventually would love to have someone to grow old with, to enjoy being with my kids and what not.
    However, I can say this. I led with sex. Always. It’s funny really, considering I’d only slept with two guys when I moved out of my house, and one of them became my husband.
    And I truly believe I found love. Though I still don’t have all that you are eagerly looking forward to, the waking up together, the spending most of your time together, the having fun with the kids. But I have found love. Or love found me, I’m not sure.

    I now feel seen, heard, I exist. I know that it came with a price. I didn’t have great communication, the sort you’re looking for apparently, not for a good few months, though I know he tried, even early on, at times when it was difficult for him to reach out. I didn’t have the dating, sharing things together. I still don’t have much of that, though it is slowly becoming more of a thing. I mean, we go to the movies once in a while, we go dancing… but it’s not ‘dating’ in the American acceptation of the term.

    And you know what? I’m Ok with it. I can live with that, and am ready to give him time in exchange for what I do get: respect, love (even if he won’t admit to it), support, cheering. And that all consuming feeling deep down that our souls connect in ways that I had never experienced before.

    So my point of view is, there is nothing wrong with leading with sex. But just as much as you refuse to put a timeline on when it is acceptable to have sex for the first time, you can also refuse to put a rule on when and how other things should happen, like texting, a second date and so on. Go with what you feel. Not with what you don’t think is right. I know it’s difficult to explain, but… why expect a morning after text? Why not send one yourself it you are grateful, instead of waiting for him to do so?

    I’ve got to rush right now, but I hope you understand what I’m trying to say. If you respect yourself, the guys will respect you too, even if there is no strict timeline as to what happens when. I may be able to expend on this later on. Maybe tomorrow… my evening is booked already :-)

    But one thing I couldn’t agree more with: don’t change who you are! You’re perfect just the way you are!

    Dawn D recently posted…Today, I riseMy Profile

  4. Let’s assume your entire self-assessment is correct (though I disagree with some of your conclusions, but let’s set that aside). Of the men you’ve dated in recent memory who you would have hoped to develop into something more than sex, how many of them were truly compatible with where you are in your life today, and you with theirs? And by that I mean men who either have already had children of their own, or don’t want any of their own but are truly okay with dating a woman who has a child?

    As I mentioned in my other post, I looked through your list of recent lovers, and overwhelmingly they are significantly younger. 8 years, 9 years, 10 years or more. These are men who are almost certain to be in different stages of their lives than you. Chances are most of them want kids of their own down the road, and are you really up for having another kid in your mid 40’s or later? This is no small issue, as these things absolutely factor in big time to a man’s mindset in terms of how he views any potential long term future and if there is one with a woman he’s dating or sleeping with.

    Again, even with TN, he was up front from the very start with you that he was not interested in a serious relationship with a woman with a kid. But you chose to disregard that and continue things with a man in a completely different life stage until you expected from him what he told you up front he could not or would not give you. You basically set yourself up for failure.

    If you want to lead with sex or your sexuality, fine. But you can’t continue choosing men who are in different stages in their lives than you, then be surprised when they don’t or can’t give you something more than just fun casual times. It’s Einstein’s definition of insanity.

    Date much younger guys if you want to have fun without any expectations of anything more than just great sex, sure, go for it. But if you want more than that, you should take a closer look at the men you’re choosing to date in the first place.

    1. Thomas, I want to thank you for your thoughtful notes to me and please don’t ever lurk again, ok??

      Having said that, this seems to be based on the opposite of the very point I’m trying to make: there is no magic formula to securing a relationship. Dating an older man doesn’t promise me anything.

      The point to this post was that I am not going to think I can make things happen where no magic exists. Younger, older, father, childless. It doesn’t matter. Someone will fit with me and I’m open to whatever.

      I hear your message that perhaps I’m stacking the deck against myself, but I don’t think I can cut them in my favor, either.

      I’m a dandelion in the wind, Thomas. Love me or leave me, I’m still gonna float where the wind takes me and enjoy the ride as best I can :) xx Hy

      1. OK, I promise I won’t lurk anymore. ;)

        That said, while I agree that there is no magic formula or guarantees of anything in this life, there are definitely choices someone can make that increase the odds of getting the outcomes one desires. So I don’t agree at all that you can’t cut the deck in your favor. If you simply choose not to, well then that’s a different kettle of fish, but then you can’t say you don’t know how to date, you have to just say you don’t want to change anything about the way you’re doing it and accept the outcomes it produces without complaint.

        And for the record I don’t believe that making different choices, even about who you date, has to mean you are compromising who you are at all. The fact is, dating certain types of men will increase or decrease the odds of being long term compatible. Doesn’t guarantee anything, and doesn’t mean there can’t be exceptions to the rule, but if you can increase the odds of success, why wouldn’t you want to?

        If you want to float where the wind takes you, remember that fate is nothing more than the collection of choices each of us makes. So every experience you have is still the product of conscious choices you are in control of, not the capricious whims of nature.

        In any case, I wish you the best of luck, and I hope you find what you are looking for.

        1. I’m having a real knee jerk reaction to this and I can’t tell if it’s because you’ve got me where it hurts (am I really not allowed to complain about things because it’s all my fault?) or is it because it feels as if I’ve painted an incomplete picture and you are responding to that instead of what I really want you to focus on.

          It’s empowering to let go of the control. You (and a bunch of others) keep saying if I chose a different type of man then they’d want to date me for real. Do you think I’m dating men who say they won’t??

          I go out with only men who tell me they’re looking for the same things as me, however, after we go out (or have sex, in particular) suddenly we aren’t all that matched up.

          The younger men are in different life phases, but it’s a good fit for me. Their schedules are easy and flexible, they’re in no rush for babies. I’m not necessarily looking for a 40 year relationship, but what if I had an amazing 12 year long one? I’d be ok with that.

          Try to keep in mind when you read me that I have done a lot of ground work and that my writing, while somewhat verbose, is still riddled with holes.

          Reminding myself that I cannot control others brings me peace. It’s not an absolution of responsibility, it’s a freedom to do me my way. And I continue to assert that there is a man out there, rare though he may be, that will be a great fit for me.

          My other knee jerk is to ask you what you think I should do because you seem convinced I’m somewhat full of shit (or maybe totally? Haha). Either way, stick around. Let’s see what happens. xx Hy

          1. >Do you think I’m dating men who say they won’t??

            I think you’re dating men who say whatever they think will keep you on the hook as long as they want you to be. When I spoke about odds, this is what that ties into. There are no guarantees that a guy who is in a similar life phase as you might not similarly lie, but the odds are greater that when he says it he actually means it than when the 30 year old childless dude does.

            > I’m not necessarily looking for a 40 year relationship, but what if I had an amazing 12 year long one? I’d be ok with that.

            This strikes me as a bit fanciful to be honest. The odds of finding a much younger, childless man, who is honestly interested in a long term relationship, where by the end of it he might be in his mid 40’s and not yet had any kids of his own, aren’t very realistic. Possible? Maybe. Probable? Not remotely.

            >My other knee jerk is to ask you what you think I should do because you seem convinced I’m somewhat full of shit

            I don’t think you’re full of shit, I just think you’ve convinced yourself there’s nothing you can do about your situation, and I disagree. You can make different choices.

            Again, I hate to bring TN up again, but it’s a perfect example. Here was a guy who explicitly told you from the beginning he didn’t want a relationship with a woman with a kid, but you chose to ignore it anyway. Maybe you can say you were just following where the breeze took you, but that’s just a way to abdicate responsibility for the choices you made, knowing what the facts were going in.

            Likewise, maybe dating much younger men is easier because their schedules are flexible, but do you really think in their minds they haven’t already sized you up as “not long term relationship potential” because of the life phase mismatch? Trust me, they have, even if they’re telling you they’re okay with dating a woman with a kid, and one they won’t be having kids of their own with.

            Ultimately I already laid out what I think you should do–focus more on men who are more likely to be in a similar life phase as you. That is, if you want to increase the odds of finding something more than casual. Or you can keep making the same choices and expecting a different result, but in my opinion that’s not a great strategy.

          2. We clearly are not going to agree on this. Until men who are wrong for me advertise that they are, how am I supposed to know? I have to go out with them, talk to them, fuck them. The men I go out with are witty, engaging, successful, attractive, and into me… until it falls apart. But that’s what these dates are for!

            Sometimes they are the same age as me – though they haven’t necessarily made the blog list – lots are younger. Most men my age are married or in the middle of a divorce and I’m not interested in either of those types. I believe what men tell me. That is that. I feel like basically you (and others) think I haven’t tried it all and that really frustrates me, but I can’t control for that. I keep repeating to everyone my beliefs about myself and others and yet what I get in return is, “Hy, you’re doing it wrong and you don’t have the right to complain. Just do it this way and then you’ll probably be fine.” But what I keep saying is what you’re suggesting to me doesn’t feel any safer, it’s just a different pool of men. It will take a man who’s open to being with me to be with me and I don’t know where I’ll find him or what life stage he’ll be in.

            And as hard as it is and sad as it makes me sometimes, it feels like the right thing for me. I have never shirked my responsibility in this venture and I sure as hell am not insane for hoping that the next guy might be different. People aren’t math equations, sometimes you can do the same thing over and over (like, be yourself) and get a different result. It’s a matter of putting yourself in front of someone new. That’s what I’m banking on. Otherwise, what am I left with? Someone who isn’t the real me dating someone who doesn’t know the difference.

          3. Also, I hope I’m not coming across too harsh, I really am saying all this stuff because I hope you find the happiness you seek.

          4. No worries. Just providing one other perspective from an outsider looking in. Again, I wish you the best in your search.

          5. I know. Something I meant to say before in our lively discussion was that lets not forget all the women who do it differently from me, perhaps they even do it the way you suggest, and they still feel similarly to the way I do. Of the women I know, I’m the only one who does it this way, and yet our stories are universal. My feelings are the same as theirs. We feel mistreated and confused, sometimes hurt, but we keep dating, because that’s what dating is: a series of failures until you stop dating because you found the right person.

            I sincerely hope our disagreement on this issue won’t run you off. You know I invite differing opinions, they make us all stronger and brighter. And you might be surprised to know that I think a lot of what you said has merit; I just have to figure out how it fits into how I do things.

  5. You have the same type of sexuality that a man normally does. This confuses most (almost all) men. This means they place you into the same category as they place each other when they chase to catch a sexual partner; after the deed is done you are released to mate again with others. It’s not a matter of being ignored, your purpose is completed and you take up no space inside their heads. They feel none of the proprietary claim which begins pair bonding and the advent of ‘dating’.
    The issue with having casual sex, is that it does not foster or predicate the change into a relationship. It’s like wanting bread and being given lettuce instead. They are different creatures and are obtained separate ways. A man who wants to date you, invests in you as they chase you. A man who wants to fuck, chases you. There is a difference. You can’t transfer their mindset of what category they place you in, once you are there. Most men compartmentalize far too well. If you want an emotional interest to flourish then accept the mans need to be teased into awareness of you as a person before being a sexual object as they are all to ready and able to place you there on their own. Mandatory public dates of activity where passion is inflamed and you lust for the other, but then can not fulfill the act because you have pre-orchestrated it. You HAVE to tease a man, to entice him, before having sex with him so you are inside of his mind. That is the only way to transition into dating. Once you do have sex, then YOU pull back a bit and let him come to you, remind him of how much fun you are and how sensual you are. and deny him…tease him…invite him to join you…next week…and then make him wait…building anticipation and allowing him to think about you and then reinforcing those thoughts with a positive and sexually titillating result is how to get inside a mans body and once there you can be assured that a relationship will either develop or not based on his response to it.
    You CAN have the cart in front of the horse, but you have to teach the horse how to push it and you have to harness it differently. You can’t expect a horse to simply accept the new position as it is completely unfamiliar with it and even the best of horses will balk because they do not understand what’s expected of them. Teach the horse.

    1. I really appreciate your time and thoughts on all of us, but I have to politely and respectfully disagree with you on this. To me, this approach smacks of The Rules and playing games that I am utterly shit at. My point of this post wasn’t me lamenting or complaining about my way of dating, it was about me acknowledging that relationships can’t be manipulated into existence by me. I have to find an available man who wants to date me. Period. I can’t pretend to be someone I’m not to catch his eye, then what? I lure him in and I’m not the woman he thought I was. I’m not an elusive type to begin with and the kind of man that needs that wouldn’t be happy with the fish in his net.

      I want a man who gets me as me. I want the horse who already knows how to push the cart (let’s just beat this metaphor to death, shall we? ha). I will sometimes become downtrodden, I will sometimes get frustrated, but I refuse to give up and just because I feel negative feelings about parts of the process, my process, doesn’t mean I need to do it differently. Especially if doing it differently feels wrong to me.

      There are women out there who do things as you suggest, who do things differently from me, who are also still alone, feel rejected and disrespected, and who are sad about it sometimes. But they keep dating their way and no one is saying they’re wrong.

      1. You’re forgetting that people are damaged and come with their own issues. You are not a cookie cut from the same shape most men are used to. What you have to offer is what most men claim to want. They just have no experience with being given exactly what they asked for and are treating you as if you are temporary. You aren’t. You are real and should not have to apologize for who you are. Ever. And it’s not what I am suggesting in spite of what I am suggesting..lol.
        Men don’t want to get hurt either. And let’s face it, the ones who aren’t damaged might be fearful. The thing you have control over is you. And you deserve to have someone who can not just handle you but who joyously is thrilled by the ability to have the chance to. You deserve the man who will let you be the sexy vixen and scoop you up for the relationship you want…the 2 are not exclusive.

        1. I am jumping in here because rougedmount started a conversation that is carried in subsequent replies. I agree with her thought process of a man because it does describe how many men feel and act. The best relationships for me were lead with get to know you actions, then sex. Sex right out of the gate never seemed to work. MaggieMayat50 relates her experiences that follow a similar pattern both before and after her current relationship. I had hope TN would see the light earlier and be the man you needed as a all around person. Ever since, I have watched your strength go up against some tough times. I still hope for the best for you. Your a lovely woman who has taken crap from men that should see you for the lovely woman you are.

  6. I don’t think there’s anything wrong when you start with sex and then work onto the emotional stuff, if that’s the next step. What I can’t understand and will never understand is that a (wo)man can be in contact with someone for weeks, sending one message after the other, and then, after sex has happened… nothing. I totally understand your frustration with this but indeed, then it just wasn’t the right man. Enjoy your life the way YOU want it, Hy, and always be the lovely woman you are!

    Rebel xox
    Marie Rebelle recently posted…Yes, I CheatedMy Profile

  7. Once again your situation and thoughts are mirroring mine. I’ve all but given up on finding the right one for me. In the meantime, I’m so very sick and tired of douchebag men with no manners. But those that I already know and have fun with are like you said the stepping stones to finding the one. So many times, and yes I’ve requested this aloud to the powers that be, I’ve wished I could just have all the great qualities of men I’ve known all wrapped up into one perfect guy. Wouldn’t that be great?
    One day at a time, and one date at a time…..
    He’s out there!! Gotta believe!!

  8. It seems that the vast majority of men haven’t evolved as fast as you have and their brains have been molded with societies and families living and believing their rote double standards. Unfortunately, a huge factor of what you’re up against is in what Thomas and Rougedmount have said.
    I want the world to “catch the fuck up…” as a song goes but it lags slow and lame behind SO, I have to adjust. It doesn’t mean give up, play games or change but it does mean to be wiser in strategy. You’re fishing for a rare fish in a vast ocean. You’re going catch something that’s hungry anytime you drop your hook and being “easily available” just adds more undesireable males to that pool. Time management – maybe that’s a better way to look at this. my .02

    1. This resonates with me because you’re saying, Hey, you’re looking for a needle in a haystack and you might get itchy while you sift through all the hay; take it easy. And that’s what I’m doing. This post has gone off the rails for me, but I appreciate your sensitivity to my position on things. Glad to have you in my world, lady. xx Hy

  9. All of us that read your blog are rooting for you Hy – after all that you went through with TN to meet someone that will treat you with the kindness that you show to others.

    Living your own way – being yourself and exploring great sex with different partners why would there be anything wrong with any of that? – Good on you.

    It only becomes an issue if you take stock and rationalize that your approach is getting results whereby you feel you are being continually let down by guys that can’t even show you basic pleasantries – such as a morning after text. Even when they were dead keen beforehand. And that treatment like this by guys that you have been kind to is disappointing and contributing to making you feel forlorn. From what you write it seems clear that whilst the sex is great – you feel you are missing out on the bits of life that come with receiving a level of care and intimacy from a man that you mean a lot to & vice versa..

    Rougemount another excellent blog writer is spot on and puts how to get a guy -thinking about you in relationship terms, inclusive of great sex rather than just sex. ( assuming that he is free and in the market for a relationship)

    I know you’re not going to give up looking and will continue to have fun on your search – but if you’re wanting more than what you have been getting – have you thought about widening your net to see if you can find what you wan?.

    I was in a sexless marriage too and it killed me. – I’m now divorced and 48 – my partner of two years is 50 and one of the things I found astonishing was that after being married myself to someone with an extremely low libido that my partner and his ex before they divorced and even after 23 years of marriage were having sex most days.

    I met my man on a dating website for the over 40’s – he was definitely looking for a relationship. Maybe you can give different websites a try…….? Just an idea – it worked for me. xx

    1. Yes, this is all complicated and stressful, but I am ever the optimist. I believe – I have to believe – that being myself is the best route. I don’t know how to get a man to “think of me in relationship terms” obviously. That feels somewhat disingenuous to me for some reason. I want to be with a guy who likes me for me just the way I am. I don’t know that a different website is the answer. It’s possible, I suppose, but what website would that be?

  10. The thing that strikes me about your approach is less external, and more internal: that is, it hurts you over and over. And that shit is going to carve a big hole in your heart.

    I think you are 100% right in your approach if you are correct in your self analysis (I have no idea if you are or aren’t, but I trust you know yourself well enough to make that call), but given how many men (still) approach women, even as much as we rail against it’s wrongness, you are going to strike MORE of the ‘do & say anything to get her into bed, okay done now’ types. Which makes it a soul destroying way to get to intimacy in a macro sense.

    If it doesn’t make you depressed and jaded and bitter, then you’re golden. I worry for you because you are a tender-hearted and open person, and getting slammed over and over will take it’s toll. I want you to protect yourself from it (like it’s any of my business!), but putting walls up or ‘not being you’ will obviously take a different (but no less harsh) toll.



    1. You’ve boiled it all down to the conflict I live every day, Ferns :). I’d also like to point out that dating less would be no less soul crushing for me because then wouldn’t I have fewer eggs in my basket and it’d be all the more intense and important that it work out?

      I think dating sucks, period. And there’s no magical age group, method, or website that can mitigate it, though lots of (now rich) authors and websites would have us believing so. It’s about two willing people being in the same place at the same time. xx Hy

  11. Since I left my husband 4 years ago, I have had the goal of leading a more authentic life. This means embracing my sexuality, seeking the kind of relationship I want, etc. I didn’t waste any more time pretending or compromising too much. If I didn’t already have a wonderful man in my life I think I would be approaching dating like you are. I think the key would be to not personalize the rejection because otherwise it would be a soul-sucking process. You know yourself–trust yourself and we have your back!

    1. The key is absolutely not to internalize or personalize the rejection or, for that matter, to call it rejection. It’s bad timing, bad manners, no interest, etc, but I don’t feel as a person that I am rejected. Sometimes, in my lower, more exhausted moments, I might entertain the thought that I am unlovable and doing everything wrong, but the truth is, I’m just doing me, so how can that be wrong, right??

  12. I so get where you are coming from(err…no pun intended there) in regards to your ex. I feel the same way about mine and it is a significant factor into my plan to change things.

    Also, you might want to check out http://onetaste.us/. I found some interesting experiences when I gave it a good shot. It sounds extremely weird, challenges a ton of social norms but if you can get through it, give it just one shot, you might garner something from it. Or maybe not. Just something worth looking into, especially for someone who is as involved and intimate with her own sexual nature, such as yourself obviously.

    For me, I learned a few things but I only took it so far. I’m not interested in their overall plan to relieve you of your income(aren’t all retailers of products and services like that?). I just wanted the experience to understand something of my own nature. Mission accomplished, I moved on.

  13. Hy, my heart goes out to you. Your posts are always so raw, heartfelt and honest to the core. Your hurt is palpable, so the last thing I want is to add to your hurt.

    My question to you is what is the one common denominator in this string of non-committal men? The answer: you. You are choosing them. You are so afraid of another sexless relationship that you want to lead with the most intimate part of a relationship rather than let that simmer for a couple of dates. I don’t have a problem with sex on the first date — I fucked my husband on the first date.

    But now that I am older (and hopefully wiser), I learned that it didn’t work for me this time around. But once again, this is my perspective about my journey. I too came from a sexless marriage (14 years of no sex), so sex was first and foremost in my mind. I wanted lots and it better be damn good. So I was having plenty of sex but with the wrong men — guys who didn’t want commitment. Then I met a man who told me that sex clouds everything and he wanted to wait a bit until he got to know me — the real Maggie. He made me wait because he values me (and he was scared too). I later learned that he has been with over 150 women…

    Hy, I think you need to explore this more and talk to a sex-positive therapist to delve into this. I love dandelions, but once their seeds blow away in the wind, it shrivels up and dies. You deserve to bloom forever. ((Hugs))
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    1. I’m happy that you found a man who wanted to know you outside of sex. If I met a man who insisted on that and who also was emotionally interesting to me, I’d certainly give it a go. And then if the sex sucked, I’d have to say goodbye.

      I do have a sex-positive therapist at my disposal and I thank you for your suggestions. I’m exhausted after fielding everyone’s comments about this today. It seems that many of you believe that if I just did something *differently* then my problems would be solved, but the truth is I’ve tried so many things in an attempt to make something stick, but the bottom line is, I haven’t found the right man for me. Of course I’m the common denominator, but so is timing — I don’t know how else to say it — but I am hopeful he’s out there, despite sometimes getting run down in the process, but that’s what dating is: a process of failures and learning and growing. It’s fucking hard. I hope to find what you have one day, but I don’t know if the path will be the same. Hugs back. xx Hy

      1. Changing your approach may not magically bring you to a committed relationship. Dating is a slog through masses of non- candidates and it can be exhausting. At the end of the day, you have to do what feels right to you. It’s your journey.

  14. I lead with sex as well, and it’s gotten me by just fine in life. I love this entire post, every word of it. I love your honesty and boldness in a society that tries to control women’s sexuality.
    Cammies on the Floor recently posted…Elust 78My Profile

  15. I feel exactly the same as you do. Sex is such an important part of a relationship. It has to be good, and the libidos have to match. In fact, good sex makes a partner attractive and makes me more tolerant. So why not find out how the sex is quite early in the relationship. I don’t want to develop a relationship and then find out that the sex is horrid or infrequent.

  16. Oh Hy. I just read this and then listened to “You Have a New Girlfriend. Good for fucking you.” I’m so sorry. My heart truly goes out to you. I’ve been a long time reader of your blog, since 2012, and have come across thousands of pieces of words splattered on screen since then. But I always return to yours because you’re such an amazing human, flesh-and-bone writer and mostly because I can relate to what you went through with TN, because I was twisted up in very similar guy. I remember you telling me TN was a cancer and so was this dude I “dated”, a triple cancer actually. In fact I think he and TN may have had the same birthday. Anyways, that relationship or whatever it was is long over but I wanted to share some things with you that happened during that time and since then, to maybe shed some light on the path you currently find yourself.

    First of all. The sex will never be as good as it was with you. Especially with mousy brown gf. And he’ll learn that pretty quick. The guy that I dated, let’s call him WC, was very much like TN in his emotional unavailability to me and unwillingness to ever take it outside of the house (well bedroom, really). He’d always come to dip his bucket down my magic wishing well though. Didn’t have a problem doing that. And it was glorious, some of the best sex I’d ever had up until that time. And I thought, I guess mistakenly, that the emotional connection we had on that level would be enough to light the rest of the fire. I was entirely wrong. Apparently he didn’t want someone like me. Someone smart, sexy, confident, funny, deep, dark, mysterious, dare I say beautiful. And a fucking goddess in bed. Nope. He let me go in the summer of 2012 and in October I moved cities to pursue my creative dreams. He stayed in his rainy city and dated a small string of women after me (I knew this from creeping his FB and IG), even though his reason for breaking it off with me was because he “wasn’t looking for a relationship.” I saw him do things with those women, take them to the park, to the dock, for breakfast, to their music gigs, to his fucking backyard badminton tournament with all of his friends that I was never invited to. It broke my heart. What was wrong with me that I wasn’t entitled to that side of his life, the sunny side, not the dark, velvety side we only whispered about?

    I kept tabs on him for several months after our breakup. Mostly out of curiosity as to which worthy maiden (for I was I was only the slut) would turn into his girlfriend. But also because I’m a bit of a masochist myself, where every suggestive social media photo caused me to search in a frenzy for more information; where every suggestive comment would bite at my heart. In January of 2013 I re-visited my rainy city and attended a burlesque show with one of my girlfriends. Low and befucking hold, he showed up, with a chick, who he introduced me to as his friend. I recognized her from IG photos but also thought her nothing more than a friend. I first spotted him while he was by himself and jokingly asked “are you here by yourself?” “No, I’m here with my friend. She’s just in the bathroom.” She was in the bathroom. There would be so many times after that night that I wished I was that friend in that bathroom. But I wasn’t. When she came out she was wearing plaid and was nothing special. She resembled me in a boring way. She was plain. Unsmiling, like him. I remember her arms were crossed. I tried to tell myself they were just friends that night and maybe they were. My girlfriend who witnessed it all told me he couldn’t keep his eyes off me all night, and I noticed it too. Their other friends joined them which strengthened my “only friends” theory. When I got to my sister’s that night I JUST ABOUT texted him for one last roll in the dark before I flew back home. I’m so glad I didn’t.

    As the weeks and months passed by I continued to monitor his life through the clippets he chose to put out. I found out who Burlesque Friend was and creeped on her too. They hung out a lot. She bought a motorcycle like his. She posted a photo of him and her pretty friends and captioned it “Babes.” They attended weddings together. Parties. Concerts.

    Then one day in May or June, out of the fucking blue, he texted me. He asked why I hadn’t posted on one of my humorous instagram accounts in a long time. I was shocked and delighted. I hadn’t reached that level of elation in months. Sure I was enjoying my new city and chasing my dreams, but him chasing me, that was a heroin rush. So I texted him back that it was because I had joined snapchat and was having more fun on there. He added me immediately to shapchat, and within a few days we were trading snaps akin to the sexting we had licked each other with back in the day. One morning I woke up to a snap of his skinny black jeans being unzippid and his hard, ready-to-fuck cock falling out. I smiled and rolled over in delight and snapped him my tits.

    That same afternoon, after basking in the glory of lust on my rooftop pool while sipping Tecates, I came into my apartment to use the bathroom and checked on my Instagram. In my feed was a photo he had just posted, a close of up of burlesque friend, eyes closed, hugging her cat, with a caption along the lines of “this is my girlfriend.” As quickly as he had built me up, he tore me down. Again. Like the dozens of times before. That was it. That was the moment I was done. I knew it was on purpose, I knew that photo was for me and I knew it was to tell me that he was with someone, even though he’d whipped his dick out for me the night before. I didn’t know why the fuck he would do that, so it was also the moment I decided he’s completely fucked in the head, confused in the heart, doesn’t know what he wants, and probably never will. And that I didn’t want to be with someone like that. Because I’m not fucked in the head or confused in the heart, I do know what I want, and I strive to get it unless a fucktard like him is messing with my pussy.

    He texted me the next day or something, about how he shouldn’t be snapping things like that anymore, and I told him “yeah, you shouldn’t.” I was terse and emotionless, like he’d always been with me. I wasn’t going to give him any more of my spirit or my fun. Or the wit that I’d always given him in texts and sex. No more, not an ounce, not a drop. Anyways, for the next EIGHT MONTHS he continued to send me snapchats. I never opened them, so I don’t know what they were. I never texted him again.

    A few months after the rooftop day with the cuddling cat photo, I met the man who would become my husband. He was everything I wanted but didn’t know could be out there in that purely concentrated form. The smartest man I know and most musically gifted soul. Gorgous. Funny. Witty. Talented. Successful. Loyal. Loving. Caring. Kind. Emotionally operational. We have a very strong mental connection that has worked in our favor to strengthen our emotinal and sexual connections. He’s basically what I was myself and knew deep down. And the great thing was, he recognized it immediately and hasn’t let me go since. He knew I was a catch and that someone like me comes around once in a lifetime. Not a day went by for 2 years where he didn’t text me and not a game was played. The sex started off good and has continued to deepen and swell all at the same time the more we fall in love with each other.

    I’m telling you all this because I know your hero is out there too. It’s not a matter of if, it’s when. I can’t tell you the steps that I took to find it exactly, but I know I stopped using my head so much and just let myself feel and trust. And heal. And I always knew, like I suspect you do, that I was worthy of finding someone like that and I always believed it was possible. And I was okay with the idea that it may never happen, but I was not okay with settling. I would have rather gone through life alone, as I’d done for most of my life, than with someone like WC. I actually feel sorry for Burlesque Friend now, who he is still with. I’m glad I’m not her.

    Another noteworthy thing about finding my true love that I always think of because it surprises me so much in its accuracy was, about 10 years ago I wrote a list of all the things I wanted in my eventual life partner and I kept it in my wallet. And the things written down were basically all of my husband’s qualities that I just listed to you. Also, I stopped expecting and just let things happen. I wasn’t sure when I met my husband if he was the one. There wasnt that crazy chemistry like there was with WC. But there was a mental chemistry and I felt so charished and safe with him that I was willing to trade off some of the loaded passion for something more stable and true. And every day it got better and better until that passionate chemistry finally blossomed and continues to bloom. I basically traded my fantasy for my best friend.

    I still check in on WC from time to time, more out of strict curiosity now. I still have hopes that his life isn’t as good as mine and that he’s not getting off in bed, which I’m sure he’s not, as the snapchats so sheepishly hinted. He posts photos once in a while and has an air of sadness about him that I feel stems from his emotional fucked up. I suppose that’s the best I can do for revenge.

    I know this is long and I hope it doesn’t come off as patronizing. You’re a grown woman who obviously takes care of herself and is capable of licking her own wounds. But sometimes when we inevitably peel off those scabs out of self loathing, pity and masochistic torture, it’s good to have a friend around who has picked their scabs too and eventually allowed them to heal. I love you Hy, and even though I don’t know you, you’re a definite internet soul sista and I cant wait to follow you on that grand adventure that leads you to true love. And thank you for sharing it all with us.

  17. Hello Hy!

    I love your blog! It’s so inspiring to see you embrace your sexuality. I find it utterly refreshing and I’ve masturbated so many times while reading it. I especially love the threesome you had with two men. So hot. I fantasize about the same thing :).

    I felt compelled to respond to this particular post because I actually disagree with the title. I think you do know how to date men. I think you’re doing just fine. Because I believe you will find what you are looking for, and that you might as well enjoy the ride along the way :).

    So here’s my take on it all, for better or worse, you can take it or leave it :).
    I believe you can have what you want. Whatever that is. I do think that you need to get clear on what it is you want. I sometimes feel like you are not clear on that when I read these posts of yours. What I mean is I want you to think of your dream relationship and what it would feel like to be there. What would your compatible life partner feel like? It’s got to be as good as sex with the neighbour was or better. However the neighbour wasn’t compatible so what else does it have to be. It has to be that he wants you as much as you want him. You are on the same page. Your connection feels like the most natural thing and your love for one another is reflected back to each other over and over. When you know what you want, when you are clear on what you want, you will recognise it when it shows up. And your feelings will be the indicator showing you that it’s what you want. You must also believe that this is not only possible but you should expect it to show up. You are a desirable sexy attractive women who deserves all this and there is No reason why this cannot happen. Belief’s are just thoughts that we keep thinking. Believe it will happen and it will. So think positive thoughts and imagine it’s going to work out for you. It doesn’t matter when or how, it’s more about enjoying the ride on the way there. Your ability to focus is your biggest asset so use it to create thoughts that feel good and that bring you happy feelings and the rest will take care of itself.

    So here is what I would want you to do in order to find that clarity. That feeling of knowing what you want. It starts with loving yourself. You must utterly love and accept yourself the way you are. Aside from the fact that you are awesome, and utterly loveable this will help you to move past all these feelings of not being able to date properly or worrying about not finding that guy or worrying that finding the guy has to happen this way or that way. When you love and accept who you are, you are just being you. Being authentic. Authenticity is one of the sexiest things. Although you’ve certainly got sexy down! haha! Belief in yourself is just you practising to be you everyday.

    There are so many benefits to falling in love with yourself. Everyone wins. You win because it makes you happy and you feel good. People around you win because you are giving the best of you to them very naturally. Your son wins because you are giving him the example of what happy can be. And we always learn from the example shown to us as kids, more than anything.

    Life is diverse and full of possibilities. You cannot get it wrong. I really believe that. You just have experiences that shape you. So as you go forth into this world enjoy yourself. Keep doing all the things that feel good and light you up. Keep enjoying your wonderful beautiful self. And most importantly love every inch of who you are, every single cell that makes up your beautiful self, inside and out.

    When you love yourself, you shine a light on the positive aspects of you and it becomes easy for others to see what you see. You are already irresistible to men, imagine what will happen when you supercharge it with all this self-love. The men or man of your dreams will be knocking the door down to not only get into bed with you but to be with you always.

    I’d love you to believe in yourself. To see your awesome and shine it outwards. Believe what you want is coming to you. Don’t doubt it. You can’t get it wrong Hy. Every experience is just feedback. It’ll feel good or bad. If it feels good focus there and do more of that. If it doesn’t feel good thats the kind of feedback thats showing you what you don’t want, so you get further clarity on what you do want by experiencing what you don’t want. That’s what I mean by you can’t get it wrong. It’s all just feedback.

    You can do it Hy. You’ll find each other. There are sooooo many possibilities out there. Let it unfold and you’ll see how amazing love can be :).

    Much love

    1. Thank you so much for this beautiful note. I absolutely agree with you and I thought that’s what I was saying in my post: There’s no better way to date than to be myself. My title was more or less to the idea that you can “date correctly.” Withhold sex, do this or that, etc., date a certain age group or life phase. I don’t believe that to be true; I think that the right people find you when the timing is right and I have no control over that. I like embracing my powerlessness, it’s freeing.

      I hope you’ve found the love you describe to me. You certainly sound like you know what it feels like! xx Hy

  18. You are right, Hy. There is no magic formula. It will just be magical when you meet the one that is right for you. All of the past will not matter one whit, for the now will be more than enough.
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