Monday, October 17, 2005

...that caliber a confessional conversation...

so i had an unusually deep IM conversation with a friend i'm going out with tonight. i guess she's something more than a friend, at this point. she's a crush. i was going to cut and paste bits of the conversation and turn them into a regular blog post, and i still might. but for now, to get my post started, is the conversation, mostly as it occurred. there are some temporal skips i've rearranged, and i've erased names of people where it was appropriate to do so.

HER: i wanted dinner to be a date but didn't know if it was a date because it's hard to tell if it is hanging out or a i always err on the side of caution...
ME: that's by far the least embarassing course of action. :) but sometimes you have to hang it out there and embarass yourself to get what you want.
HER: i consulted my wise lesbian friend [name removed] to find out how you know the difference. i caught a lot of shit for that.
ME: LOL. what did she say was the difference?
HER: i don't feel that i got a good answer....she asked me how I felt about it and what I thought about you which has nothing to do with if it is reciprocated and a date or not so i walked away thinking that the wise lesbian sage might just be a babbling old lady. :) her answer was that it boiled down to intent...if my intention was to get to know you and see if I like-like you then it is a date.
ME: yeah, i agree with her. that's about it. :)
HER: brother - dating men was so much easier - you knew for sure. i don't ever remember wondering if i was going on a date or just hanging out.
ME: indeed. it's not hard to tell with them, for some reason. women are SOOOOO frickin' ambiguous.
HER: and i'm so much more forward w/men than i am w/women. i guess because they are easier to read.
ME: i'm so much more flustered by women than i am by men, and i think it's largely because i care more about the women. if it doesn't work out with a guy, or if we get our signals crossed, i can drop him like a dirty kleenex, and not be bothered overmuch by the loss.
HER: agreed. i'm very aware when dating women that they feel more and differently than men would. men can shrug it off easier too - women have a harder time...part of the reason i wouldn't do anything with young hot [2nd name removed]- if it were a guy i wouldn't have a moral dillema, they are better at compartmentalizing than women are...ah! i have a back in a bit.
HER: so where were we...
ME: women don't compartmentalize as well as men do. and they don't separate sex from love as well as men do.
HER: well just look at us biologically (if that's even a word) and it makes complete for men is OUTSIDE of them, it is external. for women it is literally letting someone inside you - that has to affect your emotions about it in some way.
ME: it does. i think it's hormonal, too, at some level. <-- this is a new theory based on discussions with one of my trans friends.
HER: really? more please...did their feelings about it change after being on hormones?
ME: yes. he became very interested in porn, for one thing. and he used to be the type who had to be in LOVE with anyone he slept with. now, he can just fsck for fun, and love is a whole other game.
HER: well huh. that's very interesting. maybe i need a little more testosterone.
ME: :) i like you all estrogenated, thanks. testosterone also gave him acne, road rage and chest hair.
HER: well then nevermind...i think i'll stay the girly girl i am. :)
ME: yeah, probably for the best. no woman i know needs help growing hair on her chest. :)
HER: i joke that i wish i could take sex more casually but in truth i'm glad i don't.
ME: yeah? i get that. on the one hand, it would be nice from the "frequently satisfied" perspective. but, on the other hand, you risk a slutty reputation and leaving yourself open to bad experiences and lesbian drama.
HER: drama. yuck. not a fan.
ME: nope. me, either. at one level, sex is just sex for me, it's a physical thing and that's fun and i'm glad to have it as long as it's good. on another, it can be an emotional, soulful connection with somebody, and i don't want to go spreading that around too thinly. i've got a very good compartmentalizer in my emotional makeup, so i can keep those two things separated, but i find it's hard for me to have both kinds of sex with the same person. if it's sex, it's just sex. if we make love, we make love, but i can't go back and forth. that's why i'm completely baffled by the people who have booty calls with their exes. once i've severed that sort of emotional bond with someone, i can't go back and have a purely physical experience with them.
HER: that makes sense...i don't know how well my compartmentalizer works these days - i've been a serial monogamist for a while so i haven't tried it out...and probably lean much more to the emotional that the sport side...sporting still requires a level of trust to me - any time i've had a sport buddy it's been a friend that i trust but that there is a detachment emotionally.
ME: wow. self-discovery moment. until i typed that out, i'd never really thought about why i was so boggled by stories of people sleeping with their exes. yeah. if you're going to have a regular sport buddy, it has to be someone you have a level of respect and trust with, i would imagine. i've never had one, so i don't know. :)
HER: i've never had a female i don't know how well that would work. my male sporting buddy was in my 20's and someone that i really cared about and respected but we were long-time friends and when we moved on it was clean and fine...i think it was an exception rather than something i could see repeating again. i think these days sleeping with someone who didn't want to date me would be bad for my self-image.
ME: really? even if you didn't want to date the other person, either? what if it was mutual?
HER: well i can't really see me wanting to sleep with someone i don't want to date...i don't know...i haven't thought it through that well. there could be a circumstance where it would be OK - but in general i think it would translate in to my head that i'm good enough for a romp but not good enough for dating...but that's not how i would think of the other person so basically i'm just writing about stuff that hasn't come up in a long time and i don't really know how i'd feel about it.
ME: this is all pretty deep for IM. i almost feel like i'm journaling, having to write out how i feel about subjects i've never spent a lot of time defining my position on.
HER: if i had the same situation again that i had before it would be OK - that was fun and it worked...
ME: understood. i'm defining my position as i go, as well. i've never had a sport buddy, so i'm not qualified to comment. :) i've envisioned situations in which it could work, and that was the defining characteristic i came up with: we would have to be mutually attracted but in agreement on the fact that we didn't want to date for whatever reason.
HER: ...but i'm a more guarded person now than i was then so i don't know if it would work now...being guarded is something i've decided to get rid of in my life so we'll see...not sure how that will change me.
ME: i applaud the effort.
HER: effort of dropping guards?
HER: or efforts of getting a sport buddy. :)
ME: it's hard to let your defenses down, because it's scary as hell. it's also the most rewarding thing you can ever do, because there is nothing like the feeling you get from a totally truly open connection with a worthy soul.
HER: that's very true. i used to say that the worst that could happen was that i'd get hurt and i've been hurt before and i lived through it just fine ...i liked that attitude...
ME: it's a good one to have.
HER: ...but this last year i've been closed off and unwilling to really just be's time to go back to being my true self and not my scared self. but a smarter self who is better at judging who is worthy and who isn't.
ME: sometimes that defensive phase is part of healing, though. you HAVE to withdraw so you can get your balance back and be open in a healthy way.
HER: that's true. and when healing it is easy to transfer feelings rather than develop them.
ME: hrmm... what do you mean by that?
ME: (in the style of : curious, not snidely challenging)
HER: so you are in the healing process and are far enough along to step out there and start dating...
ME: k
HER: ...if you haven't put up some distance or a bit of a wall, when you start developing feelings/interest in someone, you run the risk of transferring the unresolved feelings for your ex (because you are in the healing process still) on to the person you are seeing...
ME: oh, yes. i get that. i've been on the receiving end of that before.
HER: ...instead of developing them for that person by that person's merits without the past tagging along. so while it makes it hard to be open to others, it also keeps you from bringing whatever it is you're still working on to the next experience.
ME: yeah.
HER: i have too. (been on the receiving end) - it's a weird feeling to know that what they are feeling so intensely has nothing to do with you.
ME: exactly. i had no idea where this rage in my ex was coming from, or why she kept going back to mistrusting me... i finally figured out that it was baggage, not ME.
HER: i know everyone has their baggage, everyone brings their past in to some extent - it's just really important to me to make peace with the past so it doesn't harm my future.
ME: yup. there's a fine line to walk between learning from past mistakes and being haunted by them. it's a delicate balance.
HER: i did a good job of that after [3rd name removed], but i did a lousy job of allowing myself to feel. my actions were great, my communication was excellent, but my heart and head were so disconnected...and i don't like to be unbalanced like that and think i learned a lot from those experiences and can apply the lessons.
HER: goodness, this really is like a journal IM.
ME: i know. i almost feel like i should save the chatlog and put it in my blog. (change names to protect the guilty, of course, and edit out the more embarassing bits) i don't think i will, but it's that caliber of confessional convo.
HER: you can. i don't care...except you should leave the embarassing things in for entertainment value. :)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

you're lucky "her" is feeling generous or she would post in reply YOUR embarassing comments instead of hers. :-) Good start to a fascinating subject...I'd really like to hear more about the hormonal theory.