Captain's Log

I said a few months about a friend I'll call Hal:
I wish I could feel attracted to him, but I'm just not, and I've been very clear about that. I think the problem, for me, is that he's very insecure, and honestly, in a male right now I'm looking for some serious sexual swagger.

I've known Hal close to a year now. We met on OkCupid, and I "friend-zoned" him after the first date. I just wasn't feeling him in my naughty places, though I liked him lots as a person. He was kind of new in town and didn't know many people outside his work, so I started bringing him to my go-to karaoke bar and a few other places, but I never even kissed him, except once, briefly, on New Year's Eve, and frankly, I felt nothing. But then, last week Hal followed me out of the karaoke bar and begged me for a kiss, and I gave in, both to shut him up and because I was curious, and hell if it wasn't nice. I've been reconsidering dating him.

Whether this reflects my changing priorities or my loneliness is open to debate. A couple of weeks ago, my best friend moved out of town, and of course, things between Arlo and I continue to feel complicated. After a disastrous weekend where a guy I'd thought was gold on OkCupid drove 6 hours to spend the weekend here, turning up nothing like his profile, I even hid my OkC profile and swore off dating.

To reiterate my not-dating, a bacterial infection--not an S.T.I., just an infection caused by too much swimming, exercise in tight clothes, humid climate, and stress--messed up my lady parts so badly sexual pleasure was out of the question. It took three rounds of antibiotics and copious amounts of probiotics to clear it, and in the meantime, no swimming or sex or jilling off with the showerhead.

Last night, my vajayjay finally feeling like it's sweet, tight self and ready to rock, I went home with Hal. Arlo is out of town visiting his parents--I'll have to ask him what it felt like to visit family without me for the first time in 17 years, as I'll have to go see mine this winter. Arlo recently moved into a house just a few blocks away from me with one of his best guy friends, who is recently divorced. It's been a bit disconcerting having my someday-ex husband so close. I feel like he rides his bike by the house sometimes and keeps tabs on me--actually, I think I've seen him do it.

I know it would kill Arlo to see me stumbling home with Hal, and I wouldn't want to put him through it. Hal's very nice apartment is next to Arlo's favorite bar, so that would have been another chance to get "caught" had Arlo been in town. I look forward to the day I feel like I can be fully, joyously open with my relationships. I really should get those divorce papers filled out. So much of Arlo's stuff is in my house, and he still introduces me to new people as "my wife." I wish he'd just introduce me by my name, but he'd be so hurt if I told him that.

Anyway, last night a friend gave me a THC pill and it felt lovely. A mostly-gay guy I've known for years offered to take both Hal and I home, we politely declined (Hal considers himself "heteroflexible," though he hasn't had much experience with men) and we left together.

Hal has always been very open with his feelings for me, so I felt very desired, and I trust him not to harm me. His cock is everything a cock should be, thick and hard and full of stamina. I just wish he didn't talk so much. Hal is very into talking about his feelings, he just picks the worst times to do it.

He gave me something I needed last night, that passionate, one-on-one connection, and to have someone really enjoy my body. He made me feel very sexy. Today I feel oceans more relaxed and content than I have for months. I asked Hal not to contact me for a few days, that I needed time to process, but that sometime soon I'd like to go for dinner. I don't have super-lusty or romantic feelings towards Hal, but I like and trust him and we usually have a nice time together. I don't want to hurt him by not returning his feelings, nor do I want to hurt Arlo, so I feel like I need to go slow and promise nothing to no one.
. . . I felt very desired, and I trust him not to harm me. His cock is everything a cock should be, thick and hard and full of stamina.

Today I feel oceans more relaxed and content than I have for months. I asked Hal not to contact me for a few days, that I needed time to process, but that sometime soon I'd like to go for dinner. I don't have super-lusty or romantic feelings towards Hal, but I like and trust him and we usually have a nice time together. I don't want to hurt him by not returning his feelings, nor do I want to hurt Arlo, so I feel like I need to go slow and promise nothing to no one.
Sounds like a good way to move forward. Trust your instincts!
Last week, Hal and I went out for dinner and drinks. I didn't want to go back to his place as it was my time-of-the-month and I had work early the next morning, but he gave me a pretty serious kiss goodnight. A few days later, we went hiking and I did go back to his place for sex. So far, I've declined to stay overnight, though he's asked me to, and I probably will next weekend as we have a movies-on-his-couch-night-date. He messaged me this week to say he wanted to talk to me about taking a trip together this summer.

I'm into it, I mean, Hal is good to me, makes a very good living, is clean, smart, well-traveled, and he makes me feel so, so desirable and beautiful. I do wish he wasn't so nervous around me. He gets all quiet and awkward. I don't want to be put on a pedestal. As for taking a trip with Hal....I'm not sure I'm ready, or that Arlo could handle it.

I've been trying to push Arlo to face the fact that I am no longer, in spirit, his "wife" though I care for him deeply. I packed away a bunch of his stuff so he can take it to his new place. I've asked him to help me figure out the divorce papers, hoping that will help make this real to him. Yesterday I drove him to the department store to pick out sheets and pillows--he's been sleeping on a bare mattress at his new place. He refuses to do any of this for himself.

Arlo has gone on a few dates, and he loves telling me about them in a fuck-you tone of voice, but I'm happy for him. However, he doesn't seem able to make a second date with anyone. I still am not allowed to talk about my dating life to him, which annoys me. If things go on as they've been going with Hal, I would like to be able to tag us together on Facebook, take vacations, etc. without thinking I'm disrespecting Arlo. I don't mind waiting until after the divorce, if we can make it happen soon, but after that, I will need to stop coddling Arlo's male ego.

I still crave a girlfriend, and wish with everything in my heart a kick-ass woman would come into my life and rock my world. I've been talking with two lesbians from OKCupid, but one is much younger than me and ridiculously attractive, and I think she's just new to town and looking for friends. The other is more age-appropriate, but she seems to have a lot of drama--she's in a lawsuit with an ex, she threw out her back, etc..

I have a bit of a crush on a friend. She recently broke up with her live-in girlfriend, declared herself poly, and started dating a man after 15 years of women-only. Unfortunately, I cannot make my feelings known because she started sleeping with my good friend Bess right after her break up, and Bess fell hard and wanted a monogamous relationship. The relationship only lasted a few months, but Bess still has feeling for this woman, and I would not do anything to hurt Bess. Back when I was "poly" in my early twenties, I destroyed a very good friendship by "stealing" my friend's love interests repeatedly, and I've always regretted my behavior. It's frustrating that I opened my marriage and started all this because I wanted to date women, and it's been years since I've even kissed a girl. I sometimes wonder if I shouldn't just chop my hair into a butch cut and get some tattoos, then maybe other women will want me.
When I first started sleeping with Hal, 6 months ago, I wasn’t emotionally ready for more than a fairly casual relationship, still reeling from the end of my marriage, and I kept him at arms’ length. During the first four or five months, Hal wanted more attention and reassurance from me. He was the “clingy” one. Recently, I’ve healed relations between me and my STBX and got to know Hal better, I really opened up and started having feelings for him. Hal is smart, funny, well-traveled, generous, we share a lot of opinions. He has his life together financially, he’s in great health, he gets along with my friends, and I find him ridiculously attractive lately. He’s independent and masculine without being at all brutish, and the woman in me just wants to put my hand in his and let him lead and protect me. I’ve started wanting to move forward with Hal, wondering what would it be like to travel together? Live together?

A while back he told me I was his first priority, and who he most wanted to spend time with. I even momentarily considered monogamy when he offered it to me, though ultimately, I said no thanks. Not that I’m even sleeping with anyone else. I just really, really fought hard to get to a place in my life where I can date multiple people openly, and I’m not ready to give that up. Of course, I assumed I would be the one with multiple lovers, not Hal….but I welcome the challenge. I’ve shared men I’ve loved with other men, and women I’ve loved with men. I’ve never shared a man I loved with other women.

The past couple weeks we’ve had bad “growing pains.” Though he’s a smart guy, Hal is not “emotionally intelligent,” and I….well, I’m highly sensitive to rejection. It becomes a spiral. We’ve had some drama, and now, somehow, I’m the “clingy” one. I am literally sick over it, I caught a cold, and my period came. Perhaps the fact that this all happened on the weekend, which is usually when we spend time together, means my body needs a break from him.

Hal tells me he loves me, that I’m “special” to him, usually when he’s drinking, sometimes during sex. He says he lights up when I walk in a room. He seems to get a little jealous when I have fun with my friends without him. He does boyfriend-like things such as drives me to the airport, yesterday he brought me groceries while I’m home sick (though he refused to stay and watch movies with me.) He spends most of his weekend time with me, and he seems convinced of an immediate future together, anyway, as he just RSVP’d for us both to a costume party next month, and he wants to make us matching costumes. He talks about places we should travel together-- but then, he’s been saying he wants to take a trip with me since we started dating, and he hasn’t actually done anything about it, even when I’ve given him specific dates that would work for me.

I feel like some of his gestures towards me—his professions of love, his daily texting and messaging, his way of having his hands on me at all times when we’re together-- are displays so that I’ll overlook how little of his spare time he actually spends with me. I’m worried his feelings for me aren’t nearly as deep as he believes they are. I know it sounds condescending, but he’s a lifelong bachelor and has no idea what it means to love someone long-term, to stand by them even when they’re being horrid.

I get the feeling that for Hal, this is as deep as it goes. Like ever. There is no “relationship escalator.” There is no getting closer. I’ll never meet his family (no woman ever has.) He’ll never want to spend most of his nights with me, or put up with me for more than a hot second when I’m grouchy, sick and bleeding. I admit that lately, I’ve been missing that kind of intimacy. But of course, Hal is my boyfriend of 6 months, I can hardly compare him to my husband of 17 years who used to rub my tummy when I got period cramps and who saw me broken and hospitalized and still loved me.

If you believe in “relationships attachment theories” Hal is a “dismissive avoidant” and I am an “anxiously preoccupied.” Relationships are very low priority to him, very high priority to me. And for whatever reason, we are the two types most likely to be attracted to each other. Let’s look at the red flags.

1) He’s 44, never been married, never cohabitated. I am, I believe, the longest non-LDR he’s ever been in. He doesn’t seem to have very close friendships, either. He sees his family a few times a year.

2) I asked him how his relationships usually end. He replied, “I get bored.” This scares me, as I am unlikely to be endlessly fascinating and inventive.

3) He has said whether I love him or not is irrelevant, as he loves me, and he doesn’t need me to treat him any way in particular. He insists he doesn’t care if anyone ever loves him. He’s always happy, no matter what. So, you know, he comes off totally Zen, but I’m guessing he’s totally out of touch with his emotions.

4) He can go for well over a week without seeing me without feeling the need to see me. I get itchy after a couple of days. Though it wasn’t this way at first, lately he only reaches out to me on weekends, which I know is when he feels most social—like if he wants to see someone, I’m his favorite person. I know he also sees another woman sometimes on weekdays. I’ve not asked for details on how often, or how he feels about her, I just want to focus on how he is with ME. I told him, recently, that I’d like to spend another night or so a week with him, meaning I’d like about 3 or 4 nights a week instead of 2 or 3. He said ok, but this week he didn’t ask to make plans.

5) He is horrible at emotional support and reassurance. He admits he can be “insensitive.” He also admits he has developed a defense mechanism where he does/says random off-putting things to women because he never wanted to get married. He says he’s going to try to stop doing that to me, because he really wants me to stick around. Sometimes, he does it anyway.

Back when we were first dating, he told me he was open to the idea of a life partner, though maybe not a legal marriage. I get that. But I have a very difficult time imagining him cohabitating, given his immense need for space, routine, and control, whereas I’m guessing there will come a time when I want a nesting mate—rents are high here, and I like a lot of one-on-one time.

I really miss him during the weekdays, especially as that’s when I work less—and he knows this, but still only tries to see me at HIS convenience. I’m starting to feel ready for something more intimate than what Hal seems to offer. I went on a couple OkCupid dates last week, trying to shift my sexual energy away from my focus on Hal. At the same time, I’m trying to use that sweet submission that Hal has brought out in me and remain receptive with him. I don’t want to push Hal away, I want him to come forward, I want to let this relationship be what it should be, even if it doesn't become anything deeper. I want to relax and let him love me, but I just feel so anxious and hurt knowing we live 10 minutes away from each other, and a good deal of the time, he’d rather be alone.
Lately, I've been feeling crazy about Hal and all about cock. So I guess I shouldn't be surprised that suddenly, women seem interested in me. I've gone out a couple times with a cute young lesbian (Melinda) who seems to want to take me to bed badly. I'm a bit mystified by her interest. I'm 14 years older than she, a foot shorter, and it's not as if I'm set up to be anyone's sugar-momma. She's pretty, young, feminine--a bit socially awkward, but I feel like she should have no problem attracting women. She told me, when we were talking on OKC, that she was into androgynous women, which I'm not at all. But she's kind of a drifter, an artist living on her sailboat, and she's new in town and doesn't know many people, so I may just be her only option. I'm attracted to her on a purely sexual level, not sure how deep my feelings go or if I will proceed to sex, though making out with her has been super-fun. She even asked me out on Valentine's, but I already had plans with Hal.

I recently made a connection with a more age-appropriate bisexual woman, someone I've known casually on the perimeter of my group of friends. A few days ago I asked her to give me a tarot card reading, and I felt like there were major sparks between us. We joked about dating each other, she was very touchy-feeling, wrote me a long, gushing message afterwards, and we've made tentative plans to see each other next week. I'm very excited to see if we are on the same page. I know she's in a open relationship with a guy who is similar to Hal (sort of avoid-y and not around enough.) She's like me in that she loves the concept of poly, but chafes if her partner isn't focused enough on her.

Hal caught my cold and retreated into his man-cave. I left him alone last weekend and this week, but then I got anxious and upset with nothing but texting and messaging when we only live 10 minutes apart, and I asked for a phone call. He says he wants to see me tonight, and take me to dinner on Valentine's, so I chilled. Hal is annoyingly good at giving me just enough attention/validation that I don't completely withdraw, but not enough to really let me feel grounded. I guess keeping women around but at arms' length is a skill one acquires as a confirmed, lifelong bachelor.

The tarot card reading actually mentioned a man in my life who loved me in a simple, childish way. She described it as a page-boy being in love with the Queen of Swords. But, the cards warned, something was missing beneath the surface.....startlingly accurate.
Really struggling. Sometimes I still miss Arlo so much I think I should just beg him to take me back...but I suspect it's not really him I miss so much as having someone who is my family, someone who sleeps in my bed every night (except when he watched t.v. on the couch all night which I hated.) I never doubted Arlo's love for me, and I miss that feeling of knowing someone is there for me. The other night Hal and I happened to walk by Arlo's favorite bar, and I saw my soon-to-be ex husband embracing his new girlfriend. He even put his hand on her ass. I don't think he saw me walking by, hand-in-hand with Hal. I was glad to see Arlo happy and in love, but something about it still twisted me.

I am not secure in my relationship with Hal. I can't tell if it's me being "needy," Hal being "just not that into me," or we just do relationships differently, but I can't seem to get comfortable. I've suddenly become really anxious about Hal's much-younger FWB. I've experienced some overwhelming jealousy, maybe because Hal and I haven't spent much time lately, and what with both of us getting sick back-to-back, we haven't had sex in a month. I haven't let him know, I'm not sure the point in telling him, when I'm the one who stressed leaving our relationship open.

It isn't helpful that he did something really awful to me a little while ago--broke up with me over text because I gave him the flu!!!! Of course, these were fever-ridden words spoken in frustration and anger, but even after he took it back and apologized, I had to take a few days away from him to calm my anger and disgust. The whole thing makes me feel I'm disposable to him. Sadly, I really don't think I will never get my needs met from this man-child.

I haven't seen Melinda or cute Tarot card reader. Melinda is busy with school plus she has transportation issues, and Tarot girl has had the flu. My search for a third part-time job isn't yielding the results I want, and I'm living totally hand-to-mouth which sucks and is scary. Honestly, the last few days I've been so flooded with anxiety I'm not functioning at a very high level. I'm seeing Hal tonight, going to try NOT to talk about "the relationship," which I know we've been doing too much of. I just want to chillax and try to enjoy him.
Still blue over my break-up with Hal a week and a half ago. I'm questioning why I just couldn't seem to live with this particular "non-escalating" relationship. I wanted more from him than he had to give, and I did not feel like "getting it from someone else" would be satisfactory. Hal might make a fun "secondary" type relationship, if Hal wasn't expected to provide emotional support, if I felt less put out when he didn't want to spend time with me.....but the damage is done, I don't think he'd take me back after the dressing down I gave him. I really do wish it hadn't gone down like that, a scene in a restaurant...but I just got so sick of his shit. One night a few days later, I walked into the karaoke bar, Hal was there, he looked at me, turned and walked out. He's blocked me on Facebook. I really don't want to run into him for a while, but I'm sure I will, as we like the same places.

I tend to lose interest in relationships that aren't extremely intimate and sexual--it makes me worry I'm doomed to a lifetime of brief, intense affairs. As soon as Hal turned away from me back into his life and taking less time and sex from me, I rebelled. I've been thinking about how some people use poly to get something from one partner they can't get from another. Great sex from one partner, emotional support from another. Kink from one partner, co-parenting from another. I feel like what I want is more than one fully satisfying relationship. But is that probable? Seems like though I've been attempting polyamory, it has been turning into serial monogamy with some overlap between relationships. I seem to want to pair-bond, and maybe nest with someone. But I don't want imposed sexual monogamy, and I loathe the death of passion that seems to come with long-term, cohabitating relationships. It's a tall order for anyone; no wonder people disappoint me.

I ran into Arlo one night while out with Melinda. It was a little awkward, but not negative. Afterwards Arlo texted me he'll always love me. I took a week away from her to mourn the loss of Hal, though she asked to see me. I felt bad, but I wanted to put a bit of space between Hal and Mel in my head--not bring my sadness from one relationship into the next.

Then, I had one of the most amazing dates of my life with Melinda. We drove to Miami, spent the night in a hotel on South Beach, we were all over each other the whole time, then I didn't want the date to end, and she stayed another night at my place. She is such a fascinating mix of tough and sweet. I'm trying not to get too attached--she is so much younger than me, and she has no money I really don't know her too well, but man, she is exciting, a gorgeous, wild creature, and she gets all my sex and love chemicals racing. I feel like I keep attracting people who act sooooo into me at first, they want to be with me all the time, they can't keep their hands off. Foolishly, I think that's what on offer for the rest of the relationship--then I get hooked, and they lose interest. It happened with Coco, with Hal. I'm worried it might be happening with Mel, too. We'll see.
I've been lost in a vortex of hot lesbian sex with my much-younger lover, Melinda. She is the first person I've been with in a long time who has given as good as she gets. I've only been with her a couple months, but so far, I never feel like I need to chase her. A gentle nudge, and she gives me what I want. She's never unresponsive, she doesn't withhold or pull back from me. She just wants to be with me as much as possible. We sleep on top of each other, and the way she touches me, I wonder how anyone can be so strong and so soft at the same time. She says I make her feel peaceful.

For reasons beyond me, she downplays how gorgeous she is, those eyes, those lips, those tits. If I were her, I would be working it, using my beauty to bust down doors. But there's some serious darkness there, maybe things she's not telling me. She is impulsive, takes risks. She asked me to slap her once, in the face. I just couldn't, wouldn't. I do not want to give her pain, just pleasure. I'm always very aware that, despite the fact that I'm much physically smaller than her, I'm older, I make more money, and I have ties to the community while she's new here, broke while she goes to school, and all alone.

I have a hard time imagining her as a proper "girlfriend." She seems half-feral to me, living on her sailboat, wild-haired and usually dressed like she's in her pajamas. She's more physical and sensual than verbal, and when she does try to express her feelings, it's usually so abstract I get lost. She doesn't always understand my vocabulary. She has never filed her taxes. She's smart in ways that are mathematical and mechanical--the opposite of me. We don't often go out, because I would have to pay for it, and because she's never dressed appropriately. It's like having this gorgeous, dangerous wild creature around who wants to both protect me and ravish me. She's exciting.
Just wanted to say i really enjoy your thread and the refreshing way you articulate yourself and your sexuality. Also heartened to hear you slept with male twins, it makes me feel less deviant for wanting to add my bro in law to our marriage!
Aw, thanks, @2MuchLove. Yeah, still Facebook friends with those twins! ;)
Melinda and I went sex toy shopping, bought a beautiful glass dildo. I had never tried glass before, she did once....OH MY GOD I friggin, LOVE it! So cool and hard and delicious, and easy to clean. I can't get enough of it.
I don't think I've ever had a lover as attentive, affectionate, and erotic as Melinda. We kiss so much, fuck so often, sleep so intertwined, it's like we have to constantly touch. I've done things with her sexually I've never done with anyone else, and she makes me feel so cherished and protected.

I've also never been with someone so poor, and it bothers me that I have to pay for everything we do together. I know she's got school, but she could probably swing a part-time job. Plus, I worry about her health, safety and sanity. When she's not at my place, she sleeps on her sailboat and survives on cafeteria food and p.b. and j's. I admit I'm also embarrassed when she shows up somewhere dressed like a homeless person and having not showered for two days.

I see other red flags, too--that we've only been together a four months, and she's already saying she could see us as life partners. I keep waiting to see what will happen once the honeymoon phase ends. Will I learn she was just playing me for sex, a warm bed, someone to cook/order in nutritious meals? If she's wearing any sort of mask, she's wearing it flawlessly. She seems to genuinely adore me and just glows around me.

Another red flag=she has mental health issues (well, who doesn't?) A couple of weeks ago, she went on a three day long ecstasy binge, then checked herself into detox for a week. Her behavior can be extreme, though she doesn't seem to be self-harming or violent towards others. She's admitted to me that she's been diagnosed as schitzophrenic and bipolar, but I haven't seen it yet. She's never heard voices or had a distorted reality. Her thoughts/speech can be a little disorganized, but she comes off as "out there" and eccentric rather than nonsensical. She admits she acted crazy and got in trouble as a teen to get out of living at home with an abusive stepfather, and I wonder if the diagnoses have followed her through the juvenile detention center and into her adult life. She says she hasn't been on meds since we started dating, and she feels fine...well, it's a situation we both need to keep an eye on.

Hal has come back around me, trying to be my friend. He asked me if Mel and I had an open relationship, and I was a little scared he'd hit on me. I don't think I'd give that relationship another go. Hal was great for me on paper, but emotionally, he gave so little after his initial pursuit. Why would I go back to that? He's been fucking a woman I know. She is definitely bipolar and high-drama, and very recently divorced. Hal made it disgustingly clear to me that he was just fucking her, not dating her, because he knew she was unstable. Gross. So I replied to Hal honestly, "Yes, Mel and I are open. but I'm really content with just Mel at the moment and not interested in pursuing anything else."

Melinda has told me she wants us to be primary partners, but she would like to have other lovers or girlfriends, either with me as a triad or separate from me. Mel has an online-only years-long romance with a woman in Macedonia. Last night I took a picture of Melinda in the bath and sent it to the Macedonian woman. I'm not jealous that Mel messages that woman every night, but I would be of someone local. I don't want to lose any of Melinda's time, energy, and attention. Mel has said to me she'd probably be unwilling to meet or be in the same room with any man I date, but somehow, she thinks she'd be fine with me dating other women, maybe she assumes they'd sleep with her too? We both know we aren't set up for forever monogamy, so at some point, one of us will pull the trigger. I confess I'm scared, I don't mess up what we have because of N.R.E. with other people.

I've been chatting up a guy a little from OkCupid who I think I'd like to meet in person, but unless someone really amazing comes along, I'd like to just concentrate on Melinda and figure out if she and I could have a real future together, sailing around the world.
My relationship with Melinda deepens. She's pretty much living with me at this point (yep, UHAUL lesbians) at least for the summer. It would suck for her to sleep out on her boat in this heat, with summer bugs. I'm addicted to her body, that tall, warm, gorgeous bundle, such an amazing mixture of soft and strong. She throws me a big chunk of her monthly grant. It's enough to cover my utilities plus a little. Also she often buys groceries for the house with her food stamps. I was hoping she'd get a job this summer while she's not in class, but she didn't find anything that suited her. So whenever we go out to eat, or to a bar, or do anything special, it's on me, ditto for rental movies, wine--basically anything not her clothing or medical care. I want to do fun things with her, but it does cut into what little disposable income I have.

I still see no signs of her being schitzo or bipolar. I wish I could talk to her doctors. Sounds like she only gets manic/crazy when she does too many drugs, or when her life circumstances became very hard. I honestly think she just gets nervous around doctors, or anyone she considers "authority figure," and she acts cagey. I don't know. I feel like after 5 months of being together almost constantly, I'd see signs of instability. She seems really happy, sweet, and even-tempered most of the time, much less irritable and more zen than me! She does seem to have a pretty good case of ADHD, though. It's been nice having Adderall around to take once in a while. Way better than cocaine for getting shit done with no runny nose and no hangover.

My best friend, Victoria, moved back into town yesterday! So happy about that. To celebrate, Victoria and I and the gay boys went to karaoke last night. Melinda decided not to come out, and Hal was there. He sat with us, and when he and I talked, I could just feel our connection and attraction. Still, I kept a distance, and when I'd had enough to drink, texted Mel to please come pick me up. In the middle of the night, Hal texted me that he missed me, that he loves me. Ugh. What a mindfuck. What IS love to this guy anyway? Drunk, lonely, and in lust with me does not equal love. But I really was finding him attractive last night, and enjoyed hanging with him.

Melinda has told me she does not want me to ever sleep with Hal again. In her eyes, he's everything wrong with America, oozing with white male heterosexual privilege. A military man. Pro-capitalist. Would he objectify her as a fetish (hot black lesbian)? I have to admit, he might. I can't see the two of them ever getting along. I really do crave male energy, though. I'm not actively looking for a relationship, I'm not on any dating site, but my naughty thoughts, my dreams....lots of dicks. A cock carousel. And there's Hal offering himself. He made a terrible boyfriend, but maybe he'd make a good "secondary." But I think his fixation on me is pure ego. He doesn't understand why I won't just accept his half-assed relationship style. It's that white male "I deserve women" thing that sits at the heart of rape culture. He figures he's clean, fit, healthy male who makes a good living, and he's a "nice" guy, so why do I turn him down? It make him pushy and pouty when I don't fall in line.

I texted him back this morning, saying that I agree we have a strong connection, but I don't feel like we're ever in synch. He said he would always care about me, and to let him know when I feel in synch.

I haven't heard much from Arlo. He never initiates contact, and when I text him, he responds politely, but doesn't seem like he really wants to see me or spend time with me, so I don't push, but I miss him. So strange that my husband of 15 years is no longer part of my life, but I guess that's healthy. And honestly, I still harbor so much guilt for ending the marriage and causing him pain, it's sort of a relief not to see him. I mean, here I am, living in the house we rented together, sleeping in the bed we bought together, with someone else. I never expected to be in love with someone else so soon after separating. It's bittersweet.
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I finally told my parents that I have a girlfriend. They were fine with it--I knew they would be, but still a relief. Melinda was so happy, she worried I was keeping her a secret because I wasn't fully invested.

She just got a gig as a caretaker that will have her spending weekend nights elsewhere. We talked about how that makes a little time for me to date men. Though we're "open" on paper, neither of us have actually acted on it, I have zero jealousy over Melinda's online-only "girlfriend" in another country that she's never actually met.

She asked me to wait a couple of weeks before seeking other partners, to let us both get used to spending three nights a week apart. She also says she will not tolerate any of the time we spend together being cut into by someone else. Sounds like she's okay with me having a very casual relationship, but not a serious boyfriend. I'm wondering if I should even bother opening that can of worms. I've been pretty happy just the two of us. No one has ever made me feel so loved and desired for so long.

On the other hand, I do miss men. I watch hetero porn when I can to try to scratch the itch. For so many years, when I was monogamous to my ex-husband, I couldn't even bear to see beautiful women together, because I felt so jealous I wasn't able to have that. I would really love both sides of my sexuality to be actualized--you know, have my cake and eat it too! You CAN you know, you just need a lot of cake! I'm trying to really figure what I want and what I can reasonably give someone else before going back on any dating sites.
She's pretty bossy, isn't she? Would she get bent out of shape if you had a commitment during the week that is non-dating related, like a class a few hours a nite each week? Or would she insist on taking the class with you, or tell you not to take it, for the sake of togetherness on "her" nights? If not, I don't see any fairness in what she's asking. You're poly and she knew that going in.

Of course, I'm happy for you that you feel so loved and wanted, but it also sounds like you have to kind of hide your desire to be with men from her, and that she sees herself as first in line for your time, or like she owns how you choose to spend it. I think you have mentioned before that she's very anti penis, so I could understand if your dating men squicks her out. However, from this post and others you've written, it also sounds like she might be very, very possessive toward you, and that could be problematic.
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She's pretty bossy, isn't she? Would she get bent out of shape if you had a commitment during the week that is non-dating related, like a class a few hours a nite each week? I think you have mentioned before that she's very anti penis, so I could understand if your dating men squicks her out. However, from this post and others you've written, it also sounds like she might be very, very possessive toward you, and that could be problematic.

She's not bothered when I go out with my friends without her, or when I ask her for some time alone to write. She has yet to do anything that's upset me for being too demanding. I understand that close relationships often require some compromise, and I'm glad she's forthright about her own level of comfort. Her previous open relationships were more casual than what we've got going on, and they involved having threesomes more than dating separately, so I suspect jealous/insecure feelings are rather new to her. But I agree she's going to have to get over her squickiness about me liking men.

It's been really interesting watching how Melinda navigates the world. I'm sort of a plain jane with a sarcastic side. I'm short, and starting to show signs of middle-age. But it's never been about my looks, I've always relied on my beautiful mind, my wit, and my sensitivity to attract others. Melinda, on the other hand, is naturally sweet, but also physically stunning. She's not doing anything to make herself that way, she doesn't dress to impress or wear much make up or spend more than a few minutes on her hair, but she's tall, busty, and has a face like an angel, so automatically, eyes turn to her when she walks into a room. Sometimes it's hard not to feel lost in her shadow. Several times now, we've been sitting at a restaurant and our waitresses has commented on her beauty. We walk into my karaoke bar, and gay guys come running up to her to tell her she's gorgeous. She takes it in stride, as if all women have strangers constantly compliment them. I've never in my life had a waitress tell me my eyes made her swoon :rolleyes:. She's not egotistical about it, her looks don't define her, but sometimes I find myself experiencing some serious envy.
I'm not sure which came first: N.R.E. crash after 9 months together, Melinda and I had a couple big arguments, then Mel's mental illness, previously hinted at but never seen in full-tilt, became a harsh reality. She went on an amphetamine binge and stopped taking her antipsychotics. She stopped eating and sleeping. She became convinced there were bubbles of toxins under her skin, and massaged herself for hours, actually digging into herself so hard she left bruises up and down her arms, legs, chest, and back. I'd been watching this slow deterioration for two weeks, and it finally sank in to me that she wasn't going to come out of it alone. I started pleading that she should go to the hospital, but she refused and threatened to run if I called 911. Eventually, I convinced her to let me drive her to her doctor.

Honestly, at that point, he couldn't do much for her. She was in a full-blown psychotic episode, people talking to her in the clouds, etc., but she wasn't imminently dangerous to herself or others. He strongly suggested she go to the hospital, and said that if it got any worse, I should "Baker Act" her, have her arrested for her own safety. That scared her enough to get her to hand over her uppers to me (we bought a locked pill dispenser), and got her to take her downers. She has been properly sleeping and eating and taking her meds as prescribed for a few days now, but we're both badly shaken.

Melinda has a lot of messes to clean up. She fucked up badly at work, fell behind in school, and lost the keys to her boat and motorcycle. She spent hundreds of dollars on street drugs when her prescription ran out. And I have taken a huge step back from her emotionally, the whole thing scared me so. I'm still letting her stay with me when she's not at work or school--I don't want her living alone on her sailboat while she's unstable. But I've told her that as much as I love her, I can't handle a relationship with someone whose mental illness isn't under much better control, and she needs to start thinking about other living arrangements.

I'm sad, and wishing I believed her when she says she will make sure it never happens again, and I still want her very badly. Mostly, I just want her to be ok.
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For better or for worse, my break up with Mel didn't stick. Once she started taking her meds properly and her sweet, vulnerable, real personality came back, I fell in love with her again. I don't delude myself that she will never slip again, but she's a fighter, and I believe she'd slay dragons rather than lose me. I made it clear that I'm not able or willing to be her caretaker, and she needs to handle her own shit if she wants to stick around indefinitely. She's seeing her psychiatrist this week, we'll see what he has to say about her dosages.

I went out to dinner with my ex-husband Arlo. I hadn't seen him in months, and I was nervous. He wore fashionable clothes and had even colored the grey from his hair, I guess being a single guy makes him put his best foot forward. We had a nice talk. I feel like we took a step towards a real friendship, and that felt great. I'm giving it a few weeks before contacting him again, I don't want to try to hard to fast and have it get weird.

Such a nightmare, watching my country fall to fascism and religious zealotry. I'm exactly who those white nationalists and evangelicals want to take down, a woman who won't be a wife or mother. My (bi) sexuality is my own. I'm college educated atheist who has traveled abroad. I've always chosen to live in cities. I live small, don't eat meat, don't drive a car. And yes, I do think I'm smarter than them.

We liberals get in trouble for saying that sort of thing, but really, how in any sort of reality should Trump be U.S. president? I can't believe our current government is allowing it, can't believe the electors will chose Trump when Clinton won the popular vote by 2 million. And I feel like all of our protesting, marching, signing petitions, talking, and voting isn't changing anything. The plutocrats are just plain more afraid of the gun-toting rural whites than of the rest of us.
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Melinda and I took a week and a half apart while she went out of town. I think we were both looking forward to a break from being a "couple." But after several days and nights alone, I had a meltdown induced by holiday stress, loneliness, and financial struggle. Every night when Mel called me, for three days in a row, I started crying. I confessed that I struggle with our relationship because she's so goddamned poor and socially awkward and because I can't deal with her bipolar episodes when she doesn't take her meds properly. That made her feel awful.

But then, it all came together and we had an amazing little christmas getaway. Honestly, nobody has ever felt so good in my arms. She's just so fucking sweet and gorgeous, when we're good the rest of that stuff just doesn't matter.

I've hung out with my ex husband Arlo a lot. Melinda felt threatened by me seeing Arlo three times in two weeks, but we talked it through and she relaxed. I love him like family, but I have no sexual feelings for him. It's a bittersweet love, comfortable, I know him like nobody else in this world, but the ghost of our marriage and the pain we caused each other hangs in the air.

I'm not trying to be monogamous, but it's been 9 months of no one but Melinda in my bed. She talks to her pretty little online "lover" of five years in another country daily, and they plan to meet someday when stars align. Women hit Melinda up on OKC all the time, and she's expressed interest in meeting a couple of them, nobody local. I've been messaging a cute 20-something guy, but I'd have to take a ferry to get to him. I don't think either of us want to deal right now with lovers who require much time or attention.

Between my intensely sexual and emotional relationship with Melinda, and my friendship with Arlo, I feel "polysaturated." On the other hand, I would really love some heterosexual sex. Sometimes, I think about trying again with Hal, who I know still wants me, and who got along great with my friends and always had money to take me out, but I honestly don't think in this political climate I could deal with his smarmy white male privilege. I hate the expression "It is what it is," but that's exactly how I'm feeling about my love life right now.