Those People

When you’re in a long distance relationship, the weekends you spend apart are often spent watching TV/Netflix/Hulu.  Or maybe that’s just me…

Anyway, on Saturday night I watched a movie on Netflix called Those People.  The movie wasn’t the greatest – yes, personal opinion, you can all judge on your own – but the story is about a “young gay painter who is torn between an obsession with his infamous socialite best friend and a promising new romance with an older foreign concert pianist.”

You can probably imagine some of how the film goes based on that brief synopsis, but here’s the question.  Have any of you out there struggled with a crush on a really close friend? Did that ever drive a wedge between you and a new significant other?  Have you ever had a hard time letting go of a former significant other?

50 First Dates

To be fair, I don’t know that it was 50 dates, but Kevin Atkinson, one of our amazing contributors, talks about starting back into the dating scene – particularly with online dating.  The snippet below is from his post “I wanna love somebody (Go find me somebody to love)” – and honestly, how many of us have felt the EXACT same way at some point in our LGBT dating lives?

About two months ago, I threw myself head first into the on-line dating world. I’m happy to report that in those two months I’ve gone on multiple dates, met many new people, questioned everything about my self worth and value as a human being. I’ve compared myself to every person’s body as not quite good enough, not quite thin enough, not quite strong enough, and not maintained enough for someone to really date. My personality was still genuine but consciously groomed to make sure the weird pet peeves I have didn’t surface, or how my long-term expectations were something that mattered to me. Remember, though, having expectation conversations early with someone is really forward and too serious. Because God damn it, I just wanted to make we’re on the same page for 5 year plans but I can’t ask that because THEN I’M FUCKING DESPERATE AREN’T I?!

Being Ugly: Chapter 2 – Taking Up Space

Hi, me again. So, this will be fairly short, as its mainly a reaction to the fact that I’ve been in a number of crowds of late and noticed something that fascinated me:

I’m pretty sure that many thin/good-looking people are not aware of the space they take up like fat or ugly people are.

From a VERY young age, I’ve always been cognizant of my volume – the amount of air I displace, and how that affects things around me. My instinct has become to always be against a more solid, immovable object – a wall, a column, a stately manor home, what have you – so that my volume and its will meld together and I’ll seem to take up less space. This usually manifests itself in me hanging around the perimeter of crowds, or, if in conversation, trying to be the one furthest from whatever walkway or path may be near.

I bring this up because OH MY GOODNESS I don’t think many [skinny] people have any idea that they, too, take up space. While attending a networking function last week, a group of very good-looking, thin people clumped right in the main passage between the main space and the bar, which, due to the space’s architecture, was the narrowest choke point in the room.

I was utterly aghast when I saw this… Why on earth would they choose to be located right there?! It actually made me nervous for them.

But then it dawned on me that they may not have ever been conscious of their volume – they were used to slinking through crowds without begging apologies at every brush-past, immune to the disgusted looks that an “I’m sorry, excuse me, I’m sorry…” and a shoulder-tap brings; to walking down narrow sidewalks without pressing themselves against a building every time someone else came the other way.

What must that be like?

What must that be like, to see a friend across a crowded room and go to them without hesitation, not hope they’ll come to you because you’d have to ask like 30 people to squeeze by…

What must that be like, to avoid angry looks while waiting for an airplane, everyone hoping that you aren’t seated next to them…

What must that be like, to walk across a room, and not around its perimeter…

What must that be like?

[Apologies, this was less “fairly short” than I had intended… I promise, next time, I’ll stick to 150 words or less.]

Honesty in dating

Yes, I’m stealing another of kevinatkinson’s posts.  What can I say – he writes good stuff.

The post below is titled “No more than just a one night stand, no regrets no future plans” in which Kevin discusses a guy he met on Grindr that ultimately turned into a one night stand.

But Kevin brings up an interesting theory – that in his experience, two men who prefer the same sexual position aren’t compatible.  Curious to hear some other’s thoughts on that.

But the last paragraph is why I love Kevin’s writing and why I asked him to join our team here at Sex, Love, and Labels.  Stop being the right person for someone else, and start being the person you already are.

 

Alright. So, in my return to writing, which happened earlier this week due to me having feelings and the life…I return to actually writing. About stuff, and things, and whatever blah blah stuff. Today I get to write about dating, and how no matter what people say…you can’t just change to make things work.

So. A guy on Scruff about 5 months ago messaged me. Hot in that way that you ALMOST question why they’re so interested in you. Either it’s an end to a means or they’re just desperate levels. I don’t ever say no to really attractive people messaging me, so I responded. Through very few messages we determined that we were the same sexual position preference. He was very inquisitive to whether I would ever date another top? What if we found bottoms to top together? I was very honest to him: I’ve dated other tops, and it hasn’t worked for me. Dating someone who is the same as you sexually often times doesn’t work. You both gravitate to the same moves, same desires, same tendencies. So you’re left with a lot of moves that no one is satisfied by. Or half of the routines done on “So You Think You Can Dance.”

I ended the conversation after making it pretty clear that two tops dating hasn’t worked out well for me, at least in my experience. Months passed. Seasons changed. The Gay High Holidays came, rose, and set. Fall actually came to San Francisco. And suddenly a message appeared on Scruff from this same very hot guy. Saying: I really think we should try.

Bold. I was impressed. Bold says a lot about a man. He was clear: maybe it’s worth being sexually incompatible to find a man that you connect with. What if beyond sex it was actually about that spark and down the road hope you can find which makes it worth it, not whether you’re a top or a bottom? He dared me to think: well, why not?

So I said yeah. Why not. Let’s meet for a drink.

We met for a drink. He a beer, me a gin and soda. We connected. We talked. Laughed. Kissed over our drinks. Kissing was good, so we went back to his place (conveniently a building over) and hooked up. The sexual interactions were awkward yet genuine. Two people jockeying for dominance. Decent orgasms, and then a delightful cuddle: quiet, close, and comforting. I left, we kissed at the corner, and I made my way home.

Jump two days. I ask how his week is going over text. A quick and simple response:

It’s going well. In kindness, I’m not interested in moving forward.

In my wonderful me, I say “Cool. Kindness is appreciated,” when all I wanted to tell him was “DIDN’T I FUCKING TELL YOU MONTHS AGO THAT I DIDN’T THINK THIS WOULD WORK?!” Fortunately I didn’t. I like to think I have enough decorum left in me to not make that misstep.

Ultimately, this moment is essential for me. It reminds me to trust my instinct. The moment we talked, I knew this guy and I wouldn’t work long term. Or at all. And through determination (from him) and desperation (from me) we met and all of that was confirmed. From both sides.

I’m not hurt or devastated by this, thankfully. If anything it’s fully steeled me to be exactly me. Changing one’s self to match a person has never been high on my priorities, and this revealed very clearly that I should never do so.

Ultimately, dating is a test of just how honest you are to yourself. Who are you? What do you stand for? How do you bring that authentically to the world? I think that’s the part of dating we all forget. We get so intent on being the right person for someone else, not the being the person we are. Which ultimately leaves neither party happy, and in the end leaves us bitter and sad.

What are you looking for?

I took the liberty (with his permission, of course) of borrowing a post from kevinatkinson’s blog, The Unofficial Official Blog of Kevin Atkinson.  I’ve featured some of Kevin’s posts here before, and hopefully we’ll be reading more from Kevin himself soon here on Sex, Love, and Labels.

In his post – “This ain’t easy.  It’s not meant to be.” – Kevin takes the time to actually write down what it is that he’s looking for in a man.  Trust me, this isn’t a list like “sexy, has a great personality, and a killer credit score.” Nor is it a list that’s a mile long.  It’s heart-felt and genuine.

So… what are you looking for?

  1. Someone who laughs at my typos and autocorrects in my texts rather than being perturbed by them.
  2. Dances with me when I take his hand, even if just for a quick second.
  3. Tells me I’m wrong when I’m wrong, reminds me to be humble if I’m right, and that more often than not being right is less important than the grey area between right and wrong.
  4. Someone who is kind to the messenger, even if the message isn’t positive.
  5. Someone who will tell our children it’s ok to feel, because that’s how we learn to appreciate joy.
  6. Someone who will know my friends and I will know his, but we won’t have to share the same friends and we encourage each other to keep friendships close.
  7. Someone who loves to travel without having every minute planned.
  8. Will let me sob on his shoulder when my parents are gone, and I do the same for him.
  9. Someone who I can disagree with on the most inconsequential of things and which make me love them more.
  10. Someone who fills me with that feeling I get when the delivery man brings pizza.

Being Ugly: Chapter One

Hey, its Will again. It has been literally ages since I wrote my first post for this blog, and literally the entire world has changed, and when justgngr told me I had an old unpublished post in here, I was kinda scared of what I didn’t remember writing… but here it is. Lightly edited and an actual lending added, hope you enjoy:

I have an inkling that the main reason I was asked to contribute to this blog is that I have a perspective that its founder doesn’t – I am an ugly gay person. Now, obviously, justgngr is gay… but he’s also very good looking. The world runs differently when you’re good looking – that applies to all people, regardless of sexuality – but it is amplified in the gay community.

I’ve been fat my entire life. The shopping trips I recall as a little kid were always in the “husky” section. A bookish, mildly-effeminate chubby kid, I was naturally a target for ridicule and derision in school from my peers. Truthfully, I didn’t really have any actual friends until college, so I may have missed some of the usual socialization milestones. I could carry on a grownup conversation, but didn’t know anything about how to be a kid – my non-classroom times were spent eating my PB&J in the bathroom or an empty classroom.

Some time in high school, puberty hit. Along with the realization that I was gay came the realization that everyone disliked me because I was ugly AND gay, not just ugly… but in addition, puberty has an evil way of magnifying one’s insecurities. I started growing hair in all the usual puberty places, but also on my shoulders and back, while at the same time started losing the hair on my head. Balding at 17 is not a good look, I promise you, but for the chubby gay 17-year-old with patches of hair on his jawline trying to fuse with the patches of hair on his shoulders, it just makes you look like you’ve decided to give up on any chance you ever had of getting laid.

Which is a bit odd because I lost my virginity right around that time. To a guy. From the internet. I had a great time – someone actually wanted me! To be quite honest, that’s all that sex has been for me since – knowing that for those 10-20 minutes, someone actually wants to be around you, even if it is just to get their dick sucked.

But hey, at least, for those few minutes, I get to feel sexy…

I’ll be exploring this topic much more moving forward, so lets just call this Chapter One.