Dating (A Brief History + Current Mood) Part 1 of 3

She called it ghosting, the thing she had done to me several months prior. She called it ghosting when she called me to apologize. The first thing out of her mouth when I answered the number (that seemed familiar but wasn’t saved in my phone) was, “I’m so sorry!” She went on to explain that she was so sorry that she ghosted. Still unsure as to the owner of the quasi-familiar voice I encouraged her, “Say more!”. She went on to explain how she didn’t know how to deal with her new boyfriend’s insecurities, so she completely cut off all of her male friends. I still wasn’t 100% sure, so I just told her, “Whoever this is, I deleted your number. So, I don’t know who you are.” She laughed and gave me her name. “Oh!” I said. “What YOU did was much more than ghosting, it was cruel! When I was sending you messages asking why you were deleting AND blocking me on various social media channels, I was asking if I’d done something to inadvertently upset you. I was asking you what I had done wrong. You ignored those requests when you could have just answered. Instead you left me wondering if I’d pissed you off or something.” She went on to apologize again and blame it on the insecurities of her partner. She had the intonation of a person who had returned from a bad trip to Europe and was just relieved to be back. “How do I know you won’t just do that again”, I asked. She explained that she wasn’t with him anymore, again making him the villain for the choices she made. That was when it happened. I said, “No.” What I actually said was, “Thank you for calling and saying all of that. But, I can’t describe how much that hurt when you did that to me! So, best of luck to you. You take it easy.” I’ve been dating since 1989. In all of those years, when a pretty (to me) woman offers me any form of companionship, I default to yes. However, there have been some recent changes in my dating M.O. and with October 1st acting as the unofficial first day of my new dating habits, that phone call must have been a test sent from the universe (whatever TF that means) to make sure that I’m serious. I am and here’s what’s changing about the way that I date.

It was all a dream, the idea of polyamory seemed too good to be true when I first heard the term. You mean to tell me that if I’m open and honest with the women in my life then I can date several of them and we could even like hangout and all have dinner together!? Get the fuck out! For real!? Sign me up! So, my first order of business was research. I began sitting in on open relationship discussion groups that were being held every month at the Center for Sex and Culture (CSC) in San Francisco. I listened to people who ranged in age, gender, and polyamorous experience. I listened to so many stories that lead to me creating a mental list of dos, donts, WTFs, and never-will-I-evers. Those discussions at the CSC helped me immensely as I set out on the path and began to identify as polyamorous.

The question I get a lot is, “When did you first know that you were poly?” Well, I didn’t even know that non-monogamy was an option. I just knew that the first time I ever had sex I found myself thinking, “This is AMAZING! I wonder how it feels with all the other girls in the world!?” Through my years of serial monogamy, I cheated and experienced guilt for even thinking of cheating. Then I was introduced to the term poly by a client of mine. After the aforementioned education on the culture, I began my first open relationship with someone who had been my lover for a few years already. Since we were each other’s first open relationship, we definitely experienced a lot of firsts (some mutual and some exclusive) during our time together. Once we split up, I spent the next few years “solo poly” as many poly people say when you’re without a partner.

Oh, before I go on, I should define two terms. These definitions are how I define them, not how they are universally defined. Partner, a person with whom you will or wish to build a life with. Lover, a person with whom you share and nurture a physical connection (fucking), yet you’re unsure of or do not intend to build a life with.

Statistically speaking, this post is “too long” for the average attention span. So, I split it into three parts. Be sure to subscribe so that parts 2 and 3 will cozy up to your inbox.

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