Recently, I went on a date with a polyamorous guy, who I'll refer to as the Bearded Hipster. I knew that he wasn't monogamous because he mentioned that he and his girlfriend were in an open relationship in his profile. I'd never dated a polyamorous guy before, and I had my reservations. What if I ended up really liking him? I might end up getting hurt, especially because he already had a girlfriend, and I definitely did not want to become his "other" girlfriend.
But on the other hand, after communicating with (and dating) too many guys who wanted to rush into a relationship before I was ready, this guy seemed like a good option for me, at least for now, because there was the possibility of romance and companionship with this guy without a commitment.
We went out for drinks, and we spent a long time talking at the bar. Then we went for a walk in a nearby park. I felt nervous because there was no one else at the park, and it was getting late. This guy didn't scare me, but after all those years in Chicago, I still had that sense of hyper-awareness, which is why I kept a tight grip on my pepper spray in my pocket.
We were standing there, talking in the park, when all of a sudden Bearded Hipster looked down at me, put his arm around my waist, pulled me towards him, and started kissing me. The kiss was basically 50% tongue and 50% his beard. He thought I kept pulling away because I didn't like him, but I was partly pulling away because his facial hair kept getting in my mouth. There's no discreet way to spit out someone else's facial hair, you know? I seriously don't know how those women who are married to those Duck Dynasty Guys kiss their husbands, though at least the Bearded Hipster's beard wasn't as long as theirs was.
While he was kissing me, I thought, I hope he can't smell the onion dip on my breath that I had at lunch today, though I did brush my teeth, floss, and gargle with Listerine afterwards. Wait, why am I thinking about onion dip right now? FOCUS!
The other reason I kept pulling away was because I felt uncomfortable. On most of the other first dates I've had, the guys usually either hugged me goodbye or gave me a good night kiss. Those dates didn't end with a full-on make out session like this one did.
I really was attracted to him, and I wanted to kiss him. I liked kissing him and being in his arms. But I felt overwhelmed, like it was too much too soon.
I'm not naive. I knew he wasn't looking for a long-term relationship, especially since he already had a girlfriend. I knew that he was basically just looking for someone to hook up with, and I must admit that I wanted a casual hookup too (it was my misguided attempt to get over the Model, who I still have feelings for). But I couldn't get myself to relax, and he could tell. He even said that I seemed tense while we were having drinks, which surprised me, because I'd actually been pretty relaxed when we were just talking.
As he walked me to my car, I tried to explain to him that it wasn't his fault, and that I really did like him. But I made the mistake of mentioning the Model (rule number one: NEVER mention someone you used to date while on a first date with someone else) and how I had anxiety about being intimate with someone else. I said I wanted to be with him but that I wanted to slow things down a little. He kissed me good night and said to let him know if I wanted to go out again.
The next day, I texted him, but he didn't answer. Several hours later, I texted him again, and this time he responded. He said that my anxiety was too much for him to deal with, especially since he just wanted to have fun. I've never been rejected by a guy for being too neurotic before, but I guess there's a first time for everything. It did not feel good. It made me feel like there was something wrong with me, like I was a freak. I wished I had let myself just relax and enjoy kissing him, especially because I really did want to kiss him.
It also made me think of the Model and how different he had been from Bearded Hipster. He was well aware of my anxiety, and unlike Bearded Hipster, he didn't judge me for it. He specifically asked me what I was and wasn't comfortable with, and he didn't try to rush me into anything that I didn't want to do.
I know that I am overly sensitive, too uptight, and too neurotic. It's something that I've been trying to work on because I know that if and when another guy tries to kiss me, I don't want to pull away or turn him off, especially if I really do like him and want to kiss him back. But I also know that I'll never be able to completely shed the neurotic part of my personality because it's part of who I am. I need to find someone who accepts me for who I am and doesn't judge me or make me feel bad about it, but after too many dates with the wrong guys, I'm doubtful that there is someone like that out there for me.
It's dates like that one that make me want to swear off dating altogether, or at least cancel my Bumble membership. It doesn't help that just recently some guy sent me a message on Bumble that merely said: "Three-way." It also included a picture of himself and his male friend with their shirts off. Guys like him are the reason the "block" button was invented.
What about you? Has anyone ever judged you for something that was central to your personality or your life?
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