I am feeling lost and sad and lonely. The Neighbor’s birthday is this weekend and, being silly me, I offered to take him out for his birthday on Saturday, Independence Day.
“So…” I began, “I was thinking I should take you out for your birthday this weekend. Tina and Amy are both out of town, Peyton is, too, I’d like to do something fun. What do you think?”
He looked at me with a quizzical look.
“C’mon! It’ll be fun! What else would you be doing?”
“I’d go into work then go home,” he admitted. Then he added, “Lemme think about it.”
I knew that was code for “Let me check with my therapist.” “Ok,” I said.
A couple of days later he called to say I could take him out for brunch.
As you know, Internet Boyfriend, brunch is a sore spot with me. He never went with me, hated it, he said. “I’m not a brunch person,” he’d assert. No matter my protests, he never budged. The closest I ever got were a handful of 5 am wake-up calls to go to our favorite greasy spoon. I took it, appeased, but still longed for what brunch represented: a closeness, a lazy stroll through the morning after an intimate night, a declaration of couplehood.
Last weekend I told my dates that I wanted someone to go to brunch with. Both men got what I meant without hesitation. Last night my date got it, too. “It’s special,” he’d agreed.
But this offer of brunch isn’t any of those things to The Neighbor. If I had to guess — and that’s all I can do — it’s because it’s the safest slot to put me in. It won’t be late, there won’t be much drinking (if any) and then he can bail on the excuse of having to do some work. I could feel the long arm of his therapist in this decision since I had clearly made my intentions known that I wanted to take him out for the evening, as friends only. “What do you want to do?” she likely asked. “I want to hang out with her,” he’d probably said, “but I don’t want her to get the wrong idea…”
It makes me sad because the truth is there is a deep, dark part of me that wants him to come back around to me. Not as we were, obviously, but as I’ve jumped into the deep end of dating I realize once again how special he is, how special our connection is.
Both Tina and Amy have rekindled romances with their exes. They look at me with surprise when I say TN and I haven’t slept together once since breaking up or even kissed. They have both gotten reengaged with their men and — despite all the complexities and confusions it’s caused — are happy with their lots. I want that, too, but I can’t break him down; he has a steel grip on his resolve, never drinks too much around me, runs out of the house if he does, and because my heart is still dripping with loss I rarely contact him. The chances of us bumping into each other with lowered inhibitions are nil.
I’ve come to realize that his rejection of me is integral to my wanting him. The fact that I can’t charm the pants off of him, literally, invigorates me. I want to know why, I want to solve this riddle. I can charm the pants off of 97% of the men I meet, why not him? Hell, why not the Bad Texter? Even he has me on the hook because he is a complete mystery to me.
As I’ve been given the bitch slot of the day on Saturday it’s caused me to wonder why I even bother, but it’s that inexplicable itch I have to scratch. Man after man I meet as if it’s my job and one by one they fall to my wiles. It’s so easy, too easy, IBF.
I’m ashamed to call myself charming because it might come off as arrogant, but I don’t know how else to explain that with very few exceptions I manage to make a man want more of me. Except the men I want; they eschew me, dodge me, refuse to see me. Those are the men that draw my attention most: the ones who don’t see me.
Last night I sat at the same dive bar as I had with Remington only 3 days earlier. We nearly sat at the same table, but out of respect for the ghost of that first date I steered us to a different table. He was a fine looking man, fit and wirey from climbing, self-assured, a little nerdy looking which drew me in. We began to talk and I found myself fitting to him as I had Remington, and The Lawyer and Mr. Nerdy, and all the other men.
Remember that ridiculous date I had with the guy with the face tattoos? Or the power-lifter aficionado? There have been others I never even wrote about because why? They all went nowhere. Yet, without exception they all thought it went swimmingly and wanted more of me. I’m exhausted being their perfect woman and I am forgetting to look for my perfect man.
I’m so busy being charming and winning them over, figuring them out and being wanted that I am completely forgetting to be discriminating. Why would I want this guy? Is he the right fit for me?
He loves camping (I hate it), but, I think, maybe I’m doing it wrong and he can change my mind. He’s a little bit overweight (and that’s not really my thing), but, I think again, he could lose it, it’s not a character flaw. He’s a recovering alcoholic (and I don’t really want to mess with that being the drinker that I am), but, again, I can’t judge him for getting his life on track.
And so I have these inner dialogues during these dates whereby I dismiss all my red flags, all the things I don’t really want in a partner, because I don’t want to judge and I want him to want me. And, what if I’m wrong?? God forbid I make a mistake.
I have this thing about me — I’ve noticed it my entire life — that I naturally emulate whomever I’m with. When I’m with Sharon, I get a southern drawl, when I’m with Tina my hand gestures mimic hers, when I’m with Amy I walk like her. Studies have been shown that it’s a likeability factor, this emulation. We are naturally drawn to those who are most like us, who become familiar. Books have been written on how to capitalize on it.
I suppose this was something I was born with then the skill was deeply stroked as a child in an unstable home. To survive my mercurial parents, I had to disappear, figure them out and be as likeable as possible. It’s led me to success in my career, but loss in love. I rarely know where I start and they end I am so impossibly contorted to be likeable. This gift of being a chameleon comes at a price: my own voice, my own way.
At the end of my date last night he asked how I was feeling. I was his first internet date ever (“I prefer analog,” he’d explained) and it was off of AFF. The truth was that I didn’t find him all that attractive physically, but I had enjoyed the conversation. So, I did what I always do and kept him on the hook.
“I’d like to see you again, but I have to be honest, I’m a little worn out. I go out a lot and next week I have my kid again. Are you a patient man?”
He smiled, pleased I was interested. “I am.”
I left it at that and we walked out and had a chaste kiss across from my car where, 3 days earlier, Remington had assaulted my mouth and pussy with hidden skills.
I drove home and got texts from Mr. Nerdy. He’s excited about our date tonight, a traditional dinner and then an activity. He’s been amping up the sexual content of his messages and I, quite frankly, don’t know if I have it in me.
I am so tired.
David came over Wednesday — yes, the guy who had taken himself off the market was back at me — and had railed me to oblivion. He’d picked me up and thrown me around, choked me while his hand slammed into me until I puddled around it. He bent me over and licked my asshole while holding my hands behind my back, fingered me and slipped his fat, unprotected cock deep inside my wet hole. I’d gagged on his massive cock.
He struck my flanks, my legs, my thighs until I was fire-engine red and fucked me until he came on my back. We’d laid in the waning light and talked about safe things: our dogs, physiological reactions. Then he’d pulled me back into him and rolled on top of me and kissed me passionately until I pushed him off of me and tried so hard to get that enormous dick down my throat.
Tears squeezed out as they had earlier in the night, I’d vomited a little and then he’d flipped me over and railed me again until his muscles seized up from his 60k run over the weekend. I’d fallen back on his cock and he’d turned me around to finger my ass.
How many fingers and how far he was into me was lost as I tried to cope with his penis. He coached me as I whimpered, mortified and turned on and determined all at once until I’d vomited completely into my mouth and pulled off, stiff and still, looking for something to spit into. That was it for us for the night.
We found ourselves trapped in the vortex of miscommunication again and I realized it was so easy to fuck him and let him come around because though I had figured him out I didn’t actually want him in my life as an important person.
I lay there, opposite him with his leg draped over me, his hands massaging my ankle and me stroking his calf thinking how comfortable I am with a guy I would never want to date, whereas the men who want me cause me great discomfort.
Mr. Nerdy has no idea that David sucked it all out of me. I don’t want to have sex tonight, though I’m sure I will. I will because I’ll mold myself to him and want to win him over. Plus, I like sex. It will likely be good for me to be with someone who’s interested in me beyond just my willingness to put out. And, he wants to take me to brunch.
But I will be kicking him out sometime in the night, under the summer moon, because I will have to wash up and be ready for The Neighbor’s birthday brunch and afternoon surprise (I’m taking him to the batting cages). He says he’s excited and really looking forward to it. Strangely, I am, too.
I’m looking forward to figuring this out, IBF. I’m lost. I’m sad. I’m lonely. And The Lawyer wants to spend time with me on Sunday which makes me feel all the more lonely. I need you.