Reading time: 6 – 10 minutes
I wrote an entry long ago, just before moving to The Netherlands, about “how to be my boyfriend.” It was kind of a tongue-in-cheek response to my blossoming relationship with Jip at the time, since we had some really great conversations about what to expect of each other in our moving in together, etc.
The past couple of years before Jip had been a weird time for boyfriends for me. I had one boyfriend dump me out of nowhere (just before his trip to Fire Island, mmm hmmm), and he became the only boyfriend to never speak to me again. That was really weird for me.
Then I went out with another guy within that following year whom I truly adored, but it slowly became apparent that he was into some serious drugs and he was getting really pushy and frustrated about our not having sex, (I am slooowww to get into bed, sorry) so I put an end to that. We are still friends, thank goodness, because I adore him, but you can’t force your way into my pants, or guilt me into sex.
So before diving in to my relationship with Jip, I had a serious think about what is important to me in a relationship, since I tend to be so flexible and adaptable. Jip encouraged me to draw out some harder lines of clarity, which was really refreshing. So I did it.
Now, almost 2 years since my breakup with Jip, I am on the verge of feeling interested in dating again. Barely. On the verge. I don’t know. I feel bad for whomever dates me, next, because if people thought I was “slow” before, I’m even slower now. I fall in love from the head, down; not from the crotch, up. Apparently, that’s rare. Also, because of how I fall in love, I can tend to transform a boyfriend into a friend in the blink of an eye, shifting everything into a platonic tone instead of the intimate, sexual, long-term commitment that I would have wanted. That’s why I have so many ex-boyfriends-come-friends. I love that, but it might be nice for one of them to realize that an intimate relationship isn’t the same as the ones we see on TV or in porn.
But god help my next boyfriend. I’m going to probably be a bit more aloof, slow-motion, and tentative than ever in my life.
Here are the things I defined as important to me. So if you are going to pursue me, these things have to find resonance with you in some way because I’m really interested in what a relationship might be like for me to have it clearly-defined before getting into it, instead of just rolling with it and adapting as I go. I have NO regrets for doing that in the past because I have had some wonderful, beautiful boyfriends who have gone on to become some the most important people in my life, so this is just out of curiosity; an experiment. I mean, why not? Right?
Below are my updated Deal MAKERS. That means if you find resonance with a lot of these, I would probably love the hell out of you, even as a friend.
- Socially graceful, friendly, and actually likes people
- Loves reading together (quietly, or out loud to each other)
- Loves being playful, in general, without thinking he is “too old” or “too mature” or “too cool” or that it’s “too stupid” for silly playfulness
- Loves color and brightness and appreciates toys as part of a home
- Finds laughter to be an intimate bonding factor
- Vegan, Vegetarian, or on his way to either of those
- Sees animals as valid, feeling Beings who are not to be exploited, enslaved, farmed, worn, or eaten
- Questions the very nature of reality and enjoys long, thoughtful conversations about such things
- Finds benefit in discussing issues that arise as conflicts, differences, or insecurities between us
- Is naturally monogamous and finds that to be exciting, sexual, and sensual, and not a weird, resentful burden
- Finds it thought-provoking, inspiring, and almost obligatory to question against mainstream conclusions about life, events, and truths
- Finds insecurities to be something to soothe and heal, not to use against each other, or to feel are burdens
- Is not religious, but spiritual
- Is not political, but aware
- Feels good about considering the impact of our choices on each other, and does not feel burdened by that extra step in thinking
- Does not smoke and understands why it’s a violation to ones personal space when around it in public (I’ve added this one for two reasons: kissing a smoker is gross, sorry; and if you can’t understand why no person’s habits should be something another person should be forced to partake in, then you probably don’t have a clear idea about appreciating shared space; honoring shared space (e.g. public space) is not the same thing as taking away people’s right to choose and do what they want)
So, those are some of the obvious DEAL MAKERS, but here are some deadly deal breakers, because no matter how much is being fulfilled in my deal maker list, these are the things that can ruin EVERYTHING:
DEADLY DEAL BREAKERS
These are words that will stop my relationship with you in its tracks, or seriously derail us to the point of needing a very long recovery:
- “What?! You have got to be kidding me! Animals are MEANT to be used for food and clothing! Humans are carnivores!”
- “I really don’t see what the problem is if I feel like kissing another guy or flirting with him in front of you (or behind your back)… it’s JUST a kiss, for god’s sake. And we all need that extra attention from time to time.”
- “I’ve cheated on you.” (or finding out that he’s cheated on me)
- “I already know everything I need to know about myself; I’m not really interested in learning more.”
- “Oh my god, get OVER it!”
- “I lied to you.”
Those are just a few of the obvious deal breakers, but the list doesn’t include the even-more obvious ones of violating Honesty, Communication, and Integrity, which are basic ingredients to a successful, intimate relationship. If those three things are violated in any way, there is trouble.
And I’d like to point out that I DO understand the need for attention from others, even as flirtation and even while in a monogamous relationship, but there is a way to allow room for that without it being a violation to your honesty, communication, commitment, and integrity.
Also, I don’t like the word “cheating,” but I guess it’s the only word to use to describe someone who tells you one thing and then does another thing. If you enter a relationship KNOWING what is important to me, and you stand strongly with me to encourage that mutual agreement, and then you cheat (on any level: emotionally, physically, etc), then it’s not about the act, itself, but about your lack of integrity and honesty that has destroyed our intimacy, not the actual “cheating.” If want to have sex with someone else, or you are so empty that you need to encourage affections, attention, and flirtations to an extent that keeps you from being honest and open with me, then just leave the relationship FIRST. I don’t need or want an open relationship, even though I know many find them to be successful and fulfilling. They just aren’t for me. I’ve been there, done that, and frankly, don’t need or want the experience again.
You should be prepared to have the guts to communicate and be honest, or just leave me, before you would have to cheat on us.
I don’t need to impose my rules on anyone, but I’ve accepted that it’s okay for me to have some preferences and boundaries.
It’s on record. Again.
Okay boys, don’t all fight over me at once. Get in an orderly line, please. (heh heh)