Divorce, Single Parenting, Dating, Sex, & Self-Recovery

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An Early Frost: Dating Options and Casual Sex

OFF-fordrinks

As “summer” has officially ended with the kids return to school, the landscape of my dating prospects has also had a dramatic shift.

1. The casual sex bunny has gone into hibernation. Seems the early round divorce work finally found her tender spot and she’s withdrawn diplomatic relations. I’m watching for signs that my heart was involved, but so far I am merely sympathetic to her plight. The early stage divorce process is no picnic, no matter how prepared you think you are. This is the primary reason we kept such a nice casual approach. No need to get deep when the ecstasy and whim might be fleeting. And it was.

What I’m learning at this very moment, is sometimes even the casual thing, is pushing a bit to hard for a relationship.

I count this relationship as a victory in my liberation from the previous “structure and mappings” of my relationship ideas. In some ways, learning to be casual at the beginning, learning to let go of expectations and projections of what will be, is a good thing. And I’m not saying I’m a player now. I don’t think I am. But I do think that if the “r” of relationship is never capitalized it’s okay. It’s not a failure if both of you enter into the arrangement eyes-wide-open.

And thus, I am sad about losing this remarkable woman from my circle of friends. She made the “don’t call me, I’ll call you” nature of her withdrawal pretty clear the last time I was at her house. And maybe she’ll lighten up and contact me later, but pushing into this friendship would not be an advisable strategy.

2. And the second tennis-playing and un-kissed prospect gave me the “friends” proposition last night over a nice bottle of wine. At least there is no longer any ambiguity about where we were heading. No where, according to her. “I like you a lot… But…” And then she felt bad that I didn’t want to jump to a different bar for another drink. Things got kind of frosty on her side, but I think she was apologizing for spoiling the mood more than expressing any loss on her end. “It’s not like you broke my heart,” I said as we hugged in the parking lot. “It’s fine, and I wish you well.”

With this women I was perfectly comfortable with the slow start. The lack of kissing opportunities was balanced by her good flirting. She liked to flirt. She liked to give me a hard time. And all that was cool. Even teasing can be kind of bonding. But her edge was also there, and she readily admitted to being a hard ass, as she sent the first bottle of wine to another table as a gift, because it was so bad.

And she asked the bartender to change the 4 x 4 television so that all screens would be on the US Open. Um, I don’t think that’s going to happen. And it didn’t. But she was happy to ask, in a sort of demanding tone. I could see the control and capture issues pretty clearly, but she had called me for an after-work drink. “Sure.” But I’m pretty sure that’s the last one we’ll have. Oh well, we move along and learn.

I had dodged a potential bullet, getting involved with a harshly critical woman, and was once again clear of the “prospect” nature of our developing relationship.

3. Tinder – the hookup app won’t load on my iPhone. I think it must be karmic or some other reason that the dating app of the new generation won’t load on my phone. It’s funny. And while I like hearing the experiences of one of my male friends, I’m not sure the swipe right or swipe left mode of connecting is all that alluring to me.

Match.com seems to be about the right fit. OK Cupid was cool, but it seems the “free” aspect leads to a lot more people who are not at all ready or really interested in a relationship. And eHarmony… well, we don’t really need to talk about a dating system that feeds you their “matches” rather than letting you browse. I don’t care how awesome their demographic/analytic system is, I want to browse. So the app form of dating is not all that warm for me at the moment. And actually that’s fine. My creativity is blazing, and when I left the blazé woman last night, I was happy. My evening opened back up to creativity and production.

What I’m learning at this very moment, is sometimes even the casual thing, is pushing a bit to hard for a relationship. The tennis-but-no woman was a stretch. She was attractive enough and funny and friendly, but she had such a biting edge that I was glossing over, I’m not sure I was all that clear where my intention was with her. And I think that’s a pretty critical element of dating again after divorce, you need to know what your intention is in dating. If you are looking for casual, great, own that and don’t be disappointed when a few casual prospects grow cold. And if you’re looking for the next Mr. or Mrs. Lovejoy, be cool with that too. It’s mainly about being cool with yourself and what you’re looking for. AND even more importantly, being easy on yourself and your ego as things don’t work out. That too is a learning moment.

Last night as I drove away from the BJ’s I was almost elated. I had dodged a potential bullet, getting involved with a harshly critical woman, and was once again clear of the “prospect” nature of our developing relationship. I told her at the bar, “I don’t need friends to go get a drink with. I’m looking for someone I can kiss at the end of the date.” She had just mentioned moving to another bar so she could smoke a cigarette. Um, what? That would’ve been a deal killer anyway.

Onward, untethered and wide-open again.

Sincerely,

The Off Parent
@theoffparent

back to On Dating Again

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image: waiting for a table, tim fuller, creative commons usage

be as beautiful as you are

OFF-youthswim[from a second wave - poetry]

buoyancy and energy
the highs of youth
and challenges going forward
if it’s youth you want
you’ll have to pay
for gravity defying breasts
another alteration of obsession
but the body is temporal
we change, fade, grow, bend
we move into new phases
of beauty and beautiful
if the light is out within
there is no fitness routine
no crossfit lover who can
help us respark our fire
this journey of love
life
aging
living
has its cost and benefits
we are alive but once
if we are complaining
and always wishing for more
less, other
we are missing so much
of what
is

be cute
be happy
be as beautiful as you are
at this very minute

nothing can change your joy
and nothing is as attractive
as the smile that opens
all the way up your face
burns in your eyes
as we look at each other
in the fading twilight
and years of negotiations
with gravity and coffee
and resistance and sleep

there is more in you smile
than in a thousand youthful breasts
and yours are just as i like them
attached to your
sweet
joyful
soul

8-23-14

image: cancún, carlos mendoza lima, creative commons usage

joy or i’m gone

OFF-bubbly

[from a second wave - poetry]

twenty women walk into the upscale coffee shop
i am noticing what is attractive to me
fitness, beauty, swagger
or is it what’s radiating or not radiating
from within
you can see joy a mile away
a feeling that’s coming off the happy ones
is dramatically missing from those
less joyful
and that’s more important than the fitness
underneat the lululemons
or the Porsche she parked just outside
shining and waxed in the sunlight
almost painful to look at
in brilliance, power, and lust
i am free here
to look
comment
imagine
and drink my Italian sparkling water

8-23-14

lost lady madonna

OFF-madonna

[from a second wave - poetry]

“lady madonna, children at your breast…” – the beatles

at the neighborhood pool
she’s here all the summer
with her bountiful beauty
and rosy-cheeked swimmer
they dance and splash
and cuddle in the shade
a mythic and sacred bond
that we men-folk can only observe
and be fascinated
and hungry ourselves
for such giving of love
and sustenance
in an afternoon reverie
just the two of them
lying on the bright-colored towel
beneath the heavy pecan tree
and light breeze
of course there is no place for me
for us men
in this ritual and rite
we can admire
even swoon
at our voluptuous wives
or, in my case, the wives of someone else
my time has passed
and my child is now here
hitting tennis balls with me
saying she’d like my girlfriend
when i find her
to have a young child
“it would be so cool”
imagining or remembering
the afternoons with the two of them
i never wanted to leave the house
never wanted to leave their side
give up my spot
go to work
miss the cuddles and naps and feedings
but I did
and they stayed in bed
and I returned in the evening
tired and ready to see them again
and sometimes there was dinner
sometimes we phoned it in
because all was surrounding the boy
and the magnificent breasts

8-22-14

image: escoltant musica a la playa, diluvi, creative commons usage