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

In any pattern, we must examine the constants. The first constant is me, I’ve been working on myself to be a better man and (potential) partner for 20+ years. I still work on this daily. During the “let’s stop dating” conversation, I never ask “what’s wrong with me” because any answer would be based on that one woman’s perception. The perception of one woman shouldn’t guide my decisions on how I navigate this life. One woman offered me feedback after we’d been on two dates. Like, WTF do you even know about me after two dates. You haven’t been to my house, met my cats, talked on the phone with my mama, you don’t know shit about me yet you offer feedback!? People are funny. So, I’ve made a conscious decision to leave my heart at home when I go out and meet up with someone. I’ll be clear about that when spending time with women. My heart is in a cocoon at the moment, it will emerge when the time is right.

The second constant is the type of women I date. I had to look for similarities in all of the women who couldn’t quite figure out why they didn’t wish to partner with me (yet they knew for certain that they didn’t want that). Once I figured out those similarities, I began to see things a bit differently. This is a statement based on experience, not ego. I have no trouble finding women who want to fuck me. Hypothetically speaking, how many of those same women would desire partnership with someone like me. Here’s the part where I would list all of, what I consider to be, my attributes. I’m not going to do that. I’m confident that I would be a good partner and father, I don’t need to convince my subscribers (you). I’m confident in this statement, not because I’m perfect and not because I’m done with my own development. I’m confident in this statement because I’m still willing to learn, grow, and be/do better as I unlearn toxic habits from my upbringing. I have no intention of meeting women and interrogating them as to whether or not they would partner with someone like me or not. Instead, I’ll just take more time trying to understand where their head/heart is before we make sweet bonings. 🙂 (Side note: I have no problem fucking on or before the first date. But, if I really like someone, that sex might get my heart involved before I understand whether or not she wants her heart to be involved or not. So, slowing down makes more sense in these cases.)

This is the first time in years that I’ve been completely unattached, romantically. Sure there are people that I care about, but they are all in cities miles away from me and (you guessed it) they all have partners. “Jet, I thought you were polyamorous or ethically non-monogamous or whatever TF! Why do you care if you get romantically involved with someone who has a partner?” Great question. I want to start a family. I want to partner with someone and share a dwelling. I have a wonderful life and I wish to share all of that wonder with someone who feels like a close friend. The only way any of that can happen is if she has space in her life and the desire to build the same. I know how to be everyone’s lover while respecting and allowing space for their erstwhile partnership. I want to be a part of the partnership that I wish to see in the world.

How will I find a partner? I don’t fucking know. If I knew that, I wouldn’t be writing this sappy blog post. I’m not looking for suggestions on how to meet someone. I’m also not looking for match making suggestions. I just needed to write this out because of my current mood. I’m a cisgender, heterosexual, Black man, who practices varying degrees of ethical non-monogamy. I, literally, know three other men like me in the entire world. I’m a goddamn unicorn. However, if two of those three men have partners/families then I’m left with a cup of optimism. I’ll take sips along this dating journey in order to make sure I have enough fuel to not stop altogether.

Dating (A Brief History + Current Mood) Part 2 of 3

What happened to change my views on dating? Over the span of ~30 days, ~15 dates cancelled, rescheduled, flaked, or just plain stood me the fuck up. I got tired of being everyone’s option, yet feeling like no one made me a priority. It was as if I was fucking everyone’s partner. Actually, I kinda was fucking everyone else’s partner. To be clear, I’m not above being someone’s side piece. But, when I began to feel like that was ALL that I was to the people on my social calendar, I decided to make a change. I want to be clear on something. I felt that way and I’m the owner of my feelings. Please note that I’m not saying “they made me feel” any type of way. I’ve never supported that phrase. People don’t “make me feel”, people just do things and my heart responds in a certain way based on my own perception and past experiences. I hold myself accountable for my past, my perceptions, and my feelings.

“Jet, do you want kids?” This question pops up at times and my answer has changed over the years. The answer has never been a simple yes or no because, it depends. Today, my answer is simple. I want a family. Whether that looks like me and a partner with no kids, a partner and a few kids, or a partner and a few animals in the yard, I want a family. The way I see it, if I get tied to the idea of having kids and I meet someone who has difficulty with conception and she doesn’t wish to adopt, I’m not going to just leave her. Shit, we could just put on a puppet show for kids at a local theater or something. We can figure all of that out later.

I’ve gone off on several tangents. The reason I began writing this is because I’ve decided to follow my own advice. I’ve often challenged people by asking why they keep allowing flakes to exist in their lives and meow I’ve decided to cut them out of mine.

I’ve stopped scheduling play dates. When you spend the entire week/day looking forward to making sweet love (or as my friend Mary says, making sweet bonings) only to receive a last minute cancellation or to be stood up (yes, that happens IRL and not just on sitcoms) well it fucking stinks. I get it, life happens and sometimes plans can’t be kept. So, I’ll give the benefit of the doubt on one late notice cancel. If there’s a second one, IDGAF about the reason, then I’m done scheduling anything with that person.

I’ve started leaving my heart at home. My heart is fragile. I’ve lost count of the number of women with whom I’ve wanted to partner who just didn’t see me in that same light. I’ve lost count of the women who’ve said, I’d done nothing wrong, they just weren’t feeling it. I’ve lost count of the women who’ve said, they weren’t sure why or what it was about me, but for some reason they just couldn’t see themselves partnering with me. Fuck, I remember one woman even said to me that she was going to wait for something better to come along. Let that one sink in for a bit.

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So You’ve Decided To Date Jet Noir: A What to Expect Guide

Here are ten things you should know about dating the recovering asshole Jet Noir AKA Jet [redacted] AKA [redacted] [redacted] AKA Jay AKA Nocturnus Exerçant Calme AKA Noc AKA Mayhem AKA The Mellow MC AKA Fearless J AKA [redacted]. Before I get into the list, you should know that the aforementioned list of chosen names have all been relevant at different times for different reasons. Please don’t ever ask for my “real name” since every name chosen by me is just as real as any name chosen by my parents. The name with which I introduced myself is the name I expect you to use when you address me. Any assumed privileges to use the same chosen name that my family and life-long friends call me won’t be received well. To put it another way, my Mama calls me [redacted], you don’t… like ever… not even to say it out loud in my presence because you want to test some boundary. You use the name I gave you. Now, more about me being an asshole.
The running joke with some of my close friends is that they’ve seen me go through significant changes through years of anger management. Because of that, they often commend me for being LESS of an asshole than I was in the past. #LessOfAnAsshole I began anger management in the late 90s. As a result, I’ll ask that you never try to convince me that I feel stronger than my own claim. e.g. If I say, “I’m not mad” then you don’t get to say, “Yes you are, you’re pissed!” You will never know me better than I know me. If you try to inflate my response based on your perception, we’ll be done. i.e. The way you feel when people tell you to calm down is similar to the way I feel when someone is convinced that I’m angrier than I actually am, except it’s multiplied by 100. By meow, you’re probably wondering just what type of asshole I am.
I should clarify that I don’t actually think I’m an asshole and this isn’t meant to be a piece on self-deprication. I’m writing this for a certain type of woman I’ve dated (far too often). I’ve found that the kiss of death for any potential connection is when she says, “You’re a hard read” or “I can’t figure you out” or some shit like that and we never work out. I’m not a Rubik’s Cube, I am not to be “figured out”. I am a human being and there should be no rush to gain some self-determined level of understanding as to who I am or my origin story. You will not comprehend the full character development of me in under 2 hours like some major motion picture. However, if you must study up before the semester begins, here is a “what to expect” guide for dating me that’s written in bullet-point form because the first thing you should know about me is that I am a…
1.) Hyper-Literal and Efficient Communicator. I’m not pedantic. I’m not overly concerned with what’s right. I take people at their word and this tends to annoy people. I don’t give a fuck about what you meant, I know/heard what you said. I believe it’s on you to deliver the correct message, with the correct word choice instead of leaving me with the lion’s share of responsibility to sort out the intention and subtext of your monologue. If I receive a message from you and I’m too busy to give a lengthy reply, I’ll hit you with a one-word response in lieu of not responding at all for 24 hours. If I do that, don’t criticize my one-word response because next time I just won’t respond until I’m free. For the sake of efficiency, I will also do a recap after listening to you. “So, my perception of what you just said was blah blah blazay, is that accurate?” Summarizations tend to help me process the message. I always appreciate when people tell me stories with more fact than hyperbole.
2.) Honest Until Penalized. I believe in being insufferably honest. We’re not going to play that, “do these pants make me look fat” game. I’m not going to lie to you. That will be a blessing and a curse. If you ask me would I bone your sister, you’d better be ready for any possible answer. The catch is that if my honesty is met with arguing and angst then you can expect me to share less with you in the future. I’ll still be just as honest, but I’ll keep my mouth shut about a lot of things. e.g. If I mention that a woman is attractive while we’re at the beach and you flip the fuck out and six months later you’re saying stupid shit like, “Just run off with that bitch from the beach!” then I will NEVER mention that another woman is attractive (to you) ever again. It’s fair to mention that honesty begets a reaction. A reaction is not how I define feeling penalized, an OVER reaction is what I mean by being penalized.
3.) I’m fluent in 4 out of 5 of the Love Languages. *Words of affirmation, *Quality time, *Acts of service, and  *Physical touch are all easy for me to both give and receive. I’m not great at the 5th one. *Receiving gifts is one that needs some work from me. I can receive, but giving is a challenge because it’s just easier for me to love in the other four languages. My primary LL is acts of service. Something you should know about me is that any offer I make to perform an act of service is a genuine offer. I won’t offer to drive you to the airport while secretly hoping that you’ll say, “no thanks”. If I offer it, I’m prepared to do it.
4.) Ethically Non-Monogamous. I practice ethical non-monogamy. This means that I don’t date exclusively, but I’m proactively honest about who I date with everyone in my love life. I’ve found that my ideal relationship structure is to have one partner, one lover, and one sub. I’m still open to occasional play dates (or play at parties) with others. However, those encounters hold the lowest priority and are often omitted completely when I have a partner.  I am willing to practice monogamy with a partner who is new to ethical non-monogamy for a predetermined period of time before we open up. When I write about ethics in this context, it’s important to mention that I don’t kiss and tell. If we’ve made the beast with two backs, that’s no one’s business except ours and our lovers. I don’t tell friends or social media about who I’ve had sexual relations with. I’ve even had friends, hungry for gossip, ask if i had something going on with [nunya-damn-biznass] only for me to shut them down.
5.) Sex Educator. I work in the kink industry and there are times when I will lead a workshop, co-host a play party, or act as a demo for a workshop which will involve me being a paid actor in a live sex scenario.
5b.) Burlesque Performer. I perform burlesque on any stage that will have me. That will mean that I go on tour in other countries and strip for various forms of currency.
6.) Four Agreements Practitioner. [I: Be impeccable with your word. II: Don’t take anything personally. III: Don’t make assumptions. IV: Always do your best.] I’ve found that any type of drama can be traced back to someone not following one of the four agreements. People have an especially quick reflex to make assumptions based on no actual facts.
7.) Solution-Oriented. I don’t argue. We will disagree. If our conversation is not solution-oriented, I want no part of screaming to see who’s “right”. This may annoy you if your reflex is to argue about stupid shit.
8.) Attentive to Details. I notice everything. I try to avoid commenting on most things because that would obviously be fucking annoying. However, I may ask questions because I noticed something. That is NOT me scrutinizing. I’m just asking because I don’t want to make assumptions. You will love that I notice everything when I compliment something you changed. You will hate that I notice everything when you convince yourself that I’m noticing shit that I didn’t see until you pointed out. i.e. “Don’t look at my hair!” (While I wasn’t stuttin yo hair no damned way.) This is a good time to mention that I don’t think like most people. I don’t, normally, think in terms of favorites. So, if you ask those small talk questions about my favorite food, city, or song, then you’ll be disappointed by my answer. There are some favorites in my life. I love red Dahlias. I love stickshifts over any other driving experience. I’m just not into reductionism so I don’t go around ranking things as my favorite. Further, since I don’t think like others, trying to complete my sentences will fail 100% of the time.
9.) Don’t Respond Well to Excessive Critiques, Queries, or Commentary. After a childhood of being criticized by my peers, nosy questions from people trying to “figure me out”, and the incessant need of insecure people to narrate my every move in the room (“Awww, there he go going to get some butter for his bread.”), I respond negatively to all of those habits. Just don’t be any of those people. If you ask, “What are you thinking?” my first (internal) response is, “Why do you think you’re entitled to know my thoughts?”
10.) Most of my friends are women. Since I was young, I haven’t trusted boys/men. Generally, I find most men annoying and I don’t want to be around them. (The first dumb shit to spark that #NotAllMen shit in the comments will have to write the definition of “generally” on the blackboard one thousand times!)
Circling back to me being “figured out”, does anyone enjoy that feeling? Is there a dynamic personality in the room who enjoys being pigeonholed by someone they’re dating. I don’t like being considered “predictable” and I don’t know why anyone would want to feel that. (Predictable and reliable are different things and I don’t mind being considered the latter.)
Please note that this post was written as a cathartic exercise for me and some entertainment for you. I have no intention to show this to someone before we go out on a date like some brochure. Also note, that if you think this post is about you then Carly Simon wrote a song ’bout that ego trip.

Ethical Non-Monogamy

November 18th marked the 52nd wedding anniversary of my parents. They still live in the house in which I was raised. I grew up subscribing to the standard narrative that both monogamy and matrimony were “normal”. I expected both for my life’s journey before I ever began dating or having sex. However, the second time I ever had sex I kept thinking, “If this feels so stellar… I wonder how magnificent it feels with everyone else!?” I suppressed that feeling because I felt as if I was doing something wrong by even thinking those thoughts. It took me years of shaking off societal norms to realize that there is nothing wrong with this manner of thinking.
“Hello, Lawd! It’s me again. I just want to make love to the whole world and all her girlfriends. Now, don’t that make ya mind move?” -André 3000
There have been plenty of books written on the subject of ethical non-monogamy from various perspectives. The Ethical Slut and Sex at Dawn are two books, which I’m fond of, on the subject.

On my parents 43rd anniversary, I asked my mom what her secret was for staying together for so many years. “When we got married, I sat yo father down and told him that he could do whatever he wanted to do out in the streets… as long as he didn’t bring that shit home!” From that moment, I began to wonder if they practiced a Don’t Ask Don’t Tell brand of ethical non-monogamy.
Ethical Non-Monogamy is an umbrella term that has differently nuanced definitions based on who you ask and their perception. Polyamory is also an umbrella term. Some will argue that these terms are interchangeable and some will argue that they are not. Do your own digging, understanding, and defining. Just be sure to define for others what these terms mean to YOU before you start dating.
When I was introduced to the idea that couples could commit to one another without being exclusive, my entire worldview began to change. My parents have always supported my brand of love and commitment whether I was a serial monogamist, solo poly, and even now as an ethical non-monogamist. It turns out the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Each of the aforementioned terms means something unique to me.
A serial monogamist is a person who is in perpetual search for “the one” and will even pack up and move to a new city in order to find them. I’ve lived in 5 major cities. Someone once asked what I was running from and the truth was that I was running to something, or so I thought. I was searching for the one. Once I decided that I would not find her in Atlanta, I moved to Las Vegas, then San Diego, and so on. Serial monogamists have a tendency to leap from one relationship to the next without taking time to be alone and learn about their own patterns and behaviors. Because of that unwillingness to be alone, they end up repeating the same mistakes in the next relationship. The mistake that I kept making was that I expected my partner to be my everything. I like to use the restaurant analogy. I agreed to eat at one restaurant as long as we were together. While that restaurant served a lot of my favorite foods, there were times when I wanted something off the menu. When I couldn’t enjoy that one dish that wasn’t an option, I began to complain to the manager of the restaurant (read: sabotage the relationship and start drama). It took some time by myself to understand why I was doing that. The short version of why is simple. No one person can/should ever be “everything” to someone else. Talk about a heavy load to carry!
Someone who is Solo Poly(amorous) is a person who will not allow another to dictate what they do with their heart (emotional connection with others) or body (physical connection with others). Solo poly people maintain friendships and loverships with multiple people while setting their own rules for how they navigate their lives. Solo poly people are never in a partnership that is rife with agreements and negotiations. This lifestyle isn’t for everyone.
Recently, I’ve discovered that I am an ethical non-monogamist. The list of people with whom I’ve wanted to begin a partnership is a short list. Like “six people in 15 years” short list. If you control for the quantity of those six who reciprocated my feelings, the list drops to three in 15 years. I don’t take the word partner lightly. I need to know that if we’re stuck in an action movie scenario, my partner can get us both to safety. I have no desire to date damsels in this dress or that one. Knowing this about myself, the thought of seeking or nurturing multiple partnerships doesn’t appeal to me. However, I still don’t want my partner to be my everything. I’m happy to build a partnership and possibly start a family. I only want that with one person while still maintaining other loverships. I don’t wish to have a primary. Such language allows for the subtext of secondaries and tertiaries. I don’t believe in ranking people. That feels shitty to me. But, above all else, I just want the freedom to be honest.
I found it difficult to be honest when I was a monogamist. We’ve heard all of the silly love songs about only having eyes for one person and all that jazz. The very idea that my partner will find no one attractive other than me is both arrogant and stupid. Over the years, I’ve had many fights with monogamy-minded (M&M) partners when I honestly shared with them that I thought so and so was attractive. Their response was to have the hurtest of butts and to hold that over my head for months. “Why don’t you just go fuck that girl on the beach from the other day!?” The other day… that was a year ago! You see, when people feel punished for being honest, it reduces the likelihood of them divulging other information. Then they live in the grey area between lying and withholding information.
In the practice of ethical non-monogamy, I’m more upfront and honest than I’ve ever been. “Jet, why couldn’t you be that honest when you were monogamous?” is a question I hear often. There are loads of unspoken expectations that come along with being monogamous. One of which is to never openly communicate your desires, even when you have no intent to act on them. Don’t believe me? Tell your partner that you want to have sex with one of their family members. Even with no intent to act on it, just be honest about finding their sister/brother/cousin sexually attractive and that they could get it. *I’ll wait* See what I mean? People find my honesty refreshing, but for some people I can be a bit too much. I get that. I often don’t last with those people and I’m good with that.
Through ethical non-monogamous communities, I’ve found myself in workshops ranging from better ways to communicate all the way to better ways to eat pussy. I don’t know that I would have found my way to some of these workshops as an M&M. I either wouldn’t have been invited or my M&M partner would have expressed contentment with how I do (insert theme of the workshop) and try to dissuade me from attending. I welcome this form of education that helps me to be a more attentive lover and communicator. When dealing with women who have internalized misogyny or rape culture, I’ve found myself actually coaching them on acceptable rules of engagement. Once, I asked a lover if she wanted to play. She replied with a drawn out “mmmaaaaaybe” to which I replied, I don’t understand maybe. I understand yes or no. Before she could respond, I got up and prepped to leave. She lamented that I just needed to “push a little harder.” Nope, nope, and fuck no! I went on to explain that the responsibility of consent should never be on the man to push or convince her in any way. “No one should tell you what to do with your body.” She thought I was a bit too much or too serious. That’s fine. I’m just grateful that my time in ethically non-monogamous communities has taught me to approach sex in a much more respectful way. I used to be a convincer. You know, “ComeOnBaby!ComeOnBaby!ComeOnBaby!ComeOnBaby!ComeOnBaby!” until sex happened. But, that’s not cool now and it wasn’t cool then. I’m just glad that I know better. \
Honesty, improved communication, and greater empathy are the reasons I’ve stayed on this life path. I am an ethical non-monagamist because of the freedom to be honest and share information with my partner and lovers without worry of arguments over undisclosed expectations. I am an ethical non-monagamist because these communities are sex positive and respectful of how sex should be approached. We talk out our agreements and have respectful discourse. Any time I get involved with someone, they know everything that comes along with dating me before the first date. That way, they’re able to make an informed decision. At that point, it’s up to them to decide if they think I’m “too much” for their palette.
If you have any more thoughts on ethical non-monogamy, feel free to comment below with your questions.

Disclosing If You’re Transgender Before A Date

There’s been a lot of controversy as to whether a transgender person should/should not does/doesn’t have to disclose their status as trans before a date. While there are arguments on both sides, I think the piece most angry internetters (because no one talks about important issues in person any more) are missing is the trigger that comes along with “should/should not” and “have to” language. I haven’t met many people who enjoy being told what to do (while their clothes are on). When a person who has never lived in a transgender body/mind/spirit tells an entire community what they should/shouldn’t be doing as they navigate their lives through 2017, tempers flare (and rightfully so)! I’m a cisgender heterosexual male. Before you roll your eyes, know that I’m not telling you that to make this about me. I’m telling you that because I’m NOT here to tell the transgender community what they should/shouldn’t do. I’m certainly not going to tell anyone how to date. I’m no expert at dating. I am going to offer my opinion on the matter. But, you figured that out when you subscribed to or clicked on this blog. That’s what blogs are, right? Just some random internetter sharing an opinion that is just that, an opinion.

No, [You] Don’t Have To Tell [Me You’re] Trans Before Dating [Me], but it would be nice if you felt safe enough to do so. Many transgender people fear for their safety. Because of this, not revealing their status as trans becomes a matter of keeping themselves safe. I’d like to think that we understand the basic need of self-preservation. So, before you get angry and argue the counterpoint, Yes, You Do Need To Tell Me You’re Trans Before Dating Me, stop and consider the other person’s position. Looking at this from my perspective, I have the societal privilege of being cisgender. I refer to that as a privilege because a.) many people would call me “normal”. (In general, I don’t use words like normal or weird due to the subjective nature of both. This is why I’ve used quotations around normal.) b.) As a cisgender man, I don’t have to fear violence if I walk into a room and announce to all within earshot that I’M CISGENDER! No one would care. No one would threaten to beat me. No one makes jokes on radio shows about killing cisgender men. So, to some degree, I am privileged.

I’m of the opinion (there’s that word again) that no person, or entity (talking about the Universe/God/Karma/insert deity here), owes us anything. Say it out loud, throughout your day. THE WORLD DOESN’T OWE ME ANYTHING! A transgender person certainly doesn’t owe it to me to tell me the journey of their physical vessel before we date. I would like to think that if they’ve agreed to a date with me, they would feel safe enough to share this detail with me. To be clear, they don’t owe it to me. They don’t have to, nor am I saying they should. I just want them to feel safe enough to do so. Much like when I ask a cisgender woman on a date, I hope that she feels safe enough to be alone with me (in a car or on a walk). Rape culture has given cisgender women plenty of reasons to fear being alone with men on a first date. Because of that fear, I’ve given my driver’s license number and my plates to girlfriends of the women I’ve taken out for the first time. Transphobia has given transgender women plenty of reasons to fear disclosing their status.

Let’s assume that a transgender woman does feel safe enough to disclose their status as trans to me before our first date. Does that feeling of safety mean that they should? Of course not, they don’t owe me anything. It would be nice to know. When inviting someone to sleep over, I disclose that I snor. When inviting someone over to my home, I ask if they’re allergic to cats (I have two). When offering to cook dinner for a lover, I ask about her dietary restrictions. I don’t have to do any of those things. I choose to out of courtesy and the fact that there are no safety concerns. For any transgender woman I may ask out in the future, I do hope that you will feel safe enough to know that you are empowered (not required) to tell me your status.

I once asked a woman on a date. They agreed. The date didn’t happen due to a calendar mix up. I later found out that they were trans, pre-op. I wasn’t mad. I was just left to wonder, when were they going to tell me? I’m of the opinion (there it is again) that if I don’t get the answer I seek, it’s my job to ask a better question. Let’s consider their pre-op status as a transgender woman the answer. What I learned from that experience was to open lines of communication before future dates. (Please note that opening lines of communication is not a euphemism for interrogation.)

So, I’ll leave you with this. If you’re transgender, I do hope that you’re dating people who have been vetted and/or vouched for as non-violent, open-minded, and possibly pansexual so that you do feel safe enough to disclose your status as trans. The dating pool is tough. Adding another component like that will only make that pool shallow. I get that. I’ve found that at this stage in my dating career, if she can’t accept the fact that I’m a sex worker, MMJ user (not abuser), and I’m polyamorous, then she’s not worth my time. I try to disclose all of that before our first date. If you don’t feel safe enough to disclose your status to your potential date, there’s a good chance they’re not worth your time. If you’re cisgender, don’t tell other groups what they do/don’t have to disclose. You’re encouraged to start a conversation about your own identity. You’re encouraged to let it be known if dating someone who has genitalia that does not match your sexuality is off putting. You’re encouraged to open safe lines of communication. For the love of [insert deity], don’t tell other people what to do.

The next time you (I) fall in love…

Dear Jet,

If you’re reading this letter that Past Jet wrote to you, then it may already be too late. You fall in love too easily. To be clear, you make excellent choices in the quality human beings you’ve chosen to give your heart. But, far too often, you’ve given that heart so freely and with such intensity that you may have created a whirlwind. Her head may be spinning. Everything that I’m about to tell you is based on past experiences. This isn’t about focusing on past mistakes. This reminder is about learning from your personal history.

In the beginning, you’ll want to give her everything. You’ll write her poems, buy her flowers, find songs that are just for her, and you’ll also give her your willingness. You will make yourself available in any way feasible. Because of your rule of relationships (never start any romantic habit/gesture that you’re not willing to maintain for the life of the relationship) you’ll only do the aforementioned activities if your heart leads you down that path. But, pump your brakes. All of those are beautiful gestures, but have you asked if those are the gestures that she wants? Do those gestures have the same emotional weight for her as they do for you? If you’re unsure of the answer to that question, then drive slow.

Imagine running down the Walgreens Holiday aisle on February 15th and buying all the red V-day things. Then imagine dumping all of those things on her doorstep when she’s not home. That would seem like some stalker shit, right? After the stories friends tell you about the lameness of the average dude, by comparison, a few romantic gestures can feel like that Walgreens dump approach when you display affection.

Dude, it’s like you have this habit of asking your new love interest to bend over so that you can stitch your Peacock feathers onto her bare backside with a needle! “See! Don’t you see how much I dig you! I’m so willing to give all of me!” *Boom* Jet, don’t try so goddamned hard! I’ll spare you the list of names, but I will give you a time line. Roughly every 12-18 months, you meet “her” and begin to believe in magic again. You start getting stupid as fuck and all dumb in the eyeballs, seeing her and becoming less responsive to your other lovers. But, this letter isn’t meant to reprimand you. Past Jet wants to give you a new course of action. So, here are 7 things (in no particular order) I want you to do/remember the next time you fall in love.

1.) Be the Peacock, but don’t encroach on her emotional space. Strut with humility and be your beautiful self. Give her a chance to see the real you underneath those feathers instead of figuratively pushing into her field of vision. If she sees you, great. If she doesn’t see you, keep it moving, that’s not her.

2.) Don’t lie to yourself about her perfection. She’s a human being. She’s just as flawed as you. At the same time, don’t look for her flaws either.

3.) Re-read the Four Agreements. When you turn into a dumb bunny in wuv… twu wuv, you forget the four pillars of sanity and a drama-free life.

4.) Pay more attention to her actions than her words. She will do the same when she receives your messages, trust.

5.) Speak to her about how the two of you define Polyamory, how the two of you define terms like Primary Partner or Anchor. Don’t go past the second date without having this conversation.

6.) Look at your time together through several lenses. To date someone for 12 months when she lives over 500 miles away is very different than that time you dated your neighbor. To know someone for 8 months, having only gone on 12 dates, means you’ve only gone on a date about every 2.5 weeks. Unless you’ve been on the phone every night like an eighth grader, you probably don’t know this woman very well. Remember that you don’t truly know a human until you’ve seen some range of emotions. Anger is very telling. Have you seen her angry yet? She doesn’t have to be angry with you, just annoyed at something. Until you see her explore some range of emotion (not just anger) you don’t know her. Don’t start thinking about moving in together or buying rings and shit. Calm down. (Note: Knowing basic trivia like middle name or her cousin’s birthday doesn’t mean you know her.)

7.) Your parents have an adorable “how they met” story. Your mom had a crush on your dad from the moment that your mom’s friend introduced the two of them. Your dad asked your mom to move in after he got tired of walking to the corner store to call her from the pay phone. Fast forward 50+ years later, they’re still together. Yes, that’s a cool story, Bro. But, that doesn’t mean that you’re supposed to have a similar destiny. The Universe doesn’t owe you a storybook relationship.

It’s true, it would be nice to have an emotional anchor. It would be nice to embrace romance, love, trust, and passion with a partner that “gets you” (whatever TF that means). But, the truth of the matter is that you can’t just go out and pick “her” up at the Gently Used Partner Dealership like some goddamned object. Further, you can’t “find” her like Indiana fucking Jones while ruining artifacts of ancient cultures. The Universe is not conspiring to bring you two together. The Universe gives not one fuck about the dating habits of humans any more than it cares about the sexual mating habits of Bonobos. You’re on your own. If you happen to meet someone that happens to meet you and that spirit of reciprocity shines in all of your interactions, great! The important thing (for your sanity) is to not expect that to happen. Romantic love and romantic partners are not promised to us.

The truly important thing is to be open to love.
She will see your open heart.
Be accepting of who she is
and she will walk right in.
There is no pre-conceived mold
into which she must fit.

The next time you fall in love,
learn from your past experience
without reliving your past traumas.

Kiss her like every touch on her lips will be the last
and be completely present with her.
Be cool.
Ice cold.
Warm center.
Open heart.
When you feel her reciprocity,
then the dance can start.


Past Jet