Tag Archives: love

VLOG: The Choice for Love

Reading time: 1 – 2 minutes

Hey gang!

This week I worked really hard to rise above my experience of frustration, pain, and sadness involving friends I feel were being… well, less than friends. I got to a point where I almost quit, gave up, and walked away from all of it, but there was a moment when I realized I had a choice. So I experimented… and chose Love over Fear (protection), and I’m happy I did.

How To Be My Boyfriend (redux)

Reading time: 6 – 10 minutes

It Takes TwoI 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:


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.

So there…

It’s on record. Again.

Okay boys, don’t all fight over me at once. Get in an orderly line, please. (heh heh)

What is Love, Anyway?

Reading time: 2 – 3 minutes

I’ve moved my previous entry to private status for the sake of a positive move forward for that person and me. I really only wrote it because that’s what I do… I write. But I don’t want that single entry to be a constant hindrance to a healthy resolution and move forward with my friend, so while I won’t delete it, I did make it private for my eyes only now.

It’s all good.

And it’s times like these that some of the songs of life become more important and profound than we might have considered before, especially the final stanza…

The song is about how we like to think we are being loving, being loved, but that we not only love with conditions that must be fulfilled, measuring the other person against scripts in our head, but that we also can never truly love someone else enough to resolve everything for them… so it’s a song about acknowledging our conditions so that we can rise above them and allow room for all of it, the spectrum of choices and behaviors and insecurities.

howard jones

I love you whether or not you love me
I love you even if you think that I don’t
Sometimes I find you doubt my love for you, but I dont mind
Why should I mind, why should I mind

What is love anyway
does anybody love anybody anyway
What is love anyway
does anybody love anybody anyway

Can anybody love anyone so much that they will never fear
Never worry, never be sad
The answer is they cannot love this much, nobody can
This is why I dont mind you doubting

And maybe love is letting people be just what they want to be
The door always must be left unlocked
To love when circumstance may lead someone away from you
And not to spend the time just doubting

Peacing Together Our Love

Reading time: 4 – 7 minutes

The past couple of weeks have been focused on two reunions for me. Two very important, loving friends from very difference areas of my life converged in New York City to softly rush back into my days a mix of nostalgia, grief, transformation, and unprecedented feelings of peace: JIP and FABIO.

As many of you already know, Jip is my (most-recent) ex from The Netherlands who endured my summer of near-death in 2007.  I don’t want to rehash all of that (if you want to explore, everything is archived across April, May, and June of 2007), but it was a profound and important part of my life.  Jip and I were permanently bonded by this; maybe even scarred in some way that we might both call “beautiful” now that we’ve survived together. We already shared a deep, loving bond, which was required for what we ended up enduring, but now I want our love and bonding to be free from the anchor and foundation of our powerful tragedy.  I want to build new memories and futures.  So now our reunion has come nearly 2 years later and it comes with that mix of energies I described above.

Fabio is my friend of about 5 or 6 years, stumbled upon at a mutual friend’s housewarming party long ago.  I adored him right away, but so did everyone else, so I kept my distance.  I hate when people go ga-ga over someone and crowd about him like hungry, sycophantic sheep.  I wrote him off as a pleasant and gorgeous person I might not ever see again.  But we did cross paths again. And again. And eventually found our contact moving into friendship.  He became my “going out” friend and most of our images at Flickr are of our being out and about with boys and laughs and drinks.  All of this was fun, but the playful friendship continued to grow into confidants and intimate friendship, eventually blurring lines between friendship and confused, resisted attraction.  We were falling in love in the slowest way I’ve ever known.  So slowly, in fact, that my adventure with Jip had already come into full swing before Fabio and I “admitted,” or revealed that this was happening to us.  So just before my move to The Netherlands, we discovered this and it became our private, painful and near-devastating secret.  It’s not so secret anymore, but after my diagnosis, we don’t really have the option for intimacy any longer.  And that’s okay.  We live with that.  We are “over” that.  But it’s still a bittersweet adjustment.  We are just happy that I’m alive.

So the weeks of our reunion have come and it’s been a surprising experience for me.  I thought I would have excitement, anxiety, anticipation, something dramatic, but it’s been more like they live down the street and stopped by again today to say hi, like they always do.  I feel no pressure of time, no need to catch up on two years of distance, and no need to squeeze and press as much experience in together as possible before they leave.  In fact, that lazy sense of peace almost caused me to miss out on seeing Fabio altogether!  We only got to see each other one time before he left.  And it was good.  Really good.

All I feel is… peace?  I can’t describe it as anything different than that:  Peaceful; a sense of validation that when love is genuine, it needs no theatrics, no drama, no overwhelming need to constrain it.. it just IS.  That doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its ups and downs and fun and fear, but the peace comes from realizing that love is a spectrum that includes all of that, and that none of the fluctuations, distance, changes, rearrangements, etc are a threat to it.

I don’t want to make all of this sound uber-romantic, though.  Like I said, there are ups/downs/fun/fear.  I don’t want to give the impression that “true love” is effortless; in fact, it’s not.  It requires a lot of effort.  And the shape it ultimately takes is often far from what we thought it would be.  But as with anything we strengthen, it becomes easier and easier to love, really love, the more you make that effort.  And “making the effort” means making room for everything that comes along with a relationship, and making the best choices you can make along the way, knowing that you will learn to make better ones over time.

Everyone in my life who is intimate with me and who has put up with me for more than two years knows this process of loving and closeness.  It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.  The peace that comes with having no pretenses and no threats against your circles of intimacy is worth every painful sobbing and every heightened pleasure that you thought would never end…

If you are trying to love someone, or allow them to love you… hang in there.

Hang in there… everyone is worth that effort.

Is there anyone in your life that you KNOW you love? Truly Love? Did you have the challenges of time, space, change that allowed you to see just how true your love is?