Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Little Things You Say and Do


So, here's the wedding date guy story:

He was at a party where he only knew his best friend and his best friend's girlfriend. He seemed kind of shy, so I tried to draw him out a bit. He was receptive, but still reserved. As the night wore on and he had more to drink, he was even more receptive and less reserved. He thought I was a fun party girl, but there probably wasn't much more to me than that. At one point he told me, "You are crazy, and that's really hot." An hour later he said, " I couldn't say no to anything you asked me." Really? How attractive is it when a guy tells you that? Extremely.

So, we had tons of chemistry, but that's all we knew about each other. Later when we talked when we were sober, we also had a lot of common interests. He admitted that originally his attraction was mostly physical, but after we had a real conversation, he was pleasantly surprised that I was not the person he thought I was. He asked how we were going to be able to have a relationship when we lived so far away from each other. I told him we probably weren't. If there was the hope of one of us moving closer to the other, that would be a different story. As things were, what I could give him was this: We could call and text whenever we wanted to, and whenever he came to town, I'd be happy to hang out with him. I figured that things would fizzle before we would have the chance to see each other. They didn't.

I invited him to be my date for that wedding in June. As I've already documented, we had a great time. He made plans to see me for the hippie music fest after that, and again we had a great time. At the beginning of that weekend, I felt the need to lay down some rules since this non-relationship was lasting longer than my last real relationship. "We should both feel free to do whatever we want when we aren't together in the same town, but I don't want to know anything about it, and I won't bother you with any of my details either. When either of us gets into a real relationship with someone else, then we need to tell the other one right away, and just be friends. Does that work?" He said, okay.

Before you go giving me shit about making too much about the distance thing, there are other factors to consider. He is several years younger than I am, (don't give me that look, if there was a datable man my age anywhere near this town, I'd be all over him) he wants a family eventually and I was done making babies in my twenties. The last thing I want, is for him to resent me for not being able to give him what he wants. If I accepted his offer for a relationship, he wouldn't be free to meet someone who might live closer to him, who wanted the same things he does.

The other thing is that we only know our weekend selves. He didn't even know I had curly hair until two weeks ago. He is more of a perfectionist, and my brain is messy and disorganized. Last time he was here, he even said that he doubted we'd still be dating each other if we lived in the same town and saw each other all the time. And since we'll never meet each other in real time, we won't ever know if it could work out.

So, now what we have is a fun, casual thing where we see each about one weekend a month. He's traveling this weekend, and I'm traveling the two weeks after that. We have a tentative plan to hang out the weekend I get back from California, but anything can happen in a month and my abandonment issues make me wonder whether I'll see him then or not. There were a couple of weeks last month where I didn't really hear from him, and it was hard to know if that meant he was over it, or if he was just busy. I finally texted him to check in and he texted right back to say that he was just busy, and he was very excited to see me again. I've never done this kinda, sorta relationship thing before. It's strange territory for me. In some ways it's hard to know what the rules and boundaries are. In others, it's really nice. I have tons of freedom and time and when we see each other, it's always fun and amazing. It's been good for me to learn how to let things go a little more and not take it all so seriously. And really, when you think about it, we are both conscientious people who genuinely care about and respect each other and have a lot of fun when we're together. What's not to like about any of that?

17 comments:

Remiman said...

Churlita,
One day at a time. Easier said than done.
rel

Mrs. Hairy Woman said...

I've never had a long distance relatonship..but it sounds like all is going good foe you right now.. At least you have set some boundaries and are willing to give it a try..Some people might not even giving the guy a second look... Hopefully you can be good friends...even if it doesn't go wel..

Tara said...

I like your rule and I think he appreciates it too. Sounds like a reasonable thing to stick to. I would imagine that long distance relationships are tricky and frustrating at times. But then you have a sort of freedom too.

Susan said...

I'm sort of going through this with guy of the same name. He works out of town for 14 days then is home for 4. We haven't laid down any terms at all but part of me is having a major "I want to call but don't know when he works. I want to text but don't want to seem more interested than I am". I'm going with what my VoR told me and letting it lie until he comes back into town.

...in 11 days. Ugh, why must I always have a mental countdown?

Mr Atrocity said...

It's always best if everyone knows where they stand: no misconceptions, miscommunications or misunderstandings.

NoRegrets said...

It sounds healthy. Out in the open. Which is good.

I once had a thing like that with a guy in my same town. If neither one of us was dating anyone, we hung out, had sex, etc. But if we started dating, it would be pushed to the side. Which sounds strange, but it worked because we were good friends who liked to have sex once in a while. And we knew a relationship wouldn't work (we had tried several times).

DJSassafrass said...

Like I always say enjoy what works until it doesn't work. Then you just say goodbye. In the meantime have fun!

Poptart said...

You are doing good, Churl. And I like him too. Have fun! And don't worry. What you've got so far is better than a lot of people have in "real" relationships - fun, honesty, and mutual respect. I love it.

(Where can I get me one? :) )

Minyo said...

This non-relationship thing of yours with open communication and honesty and hanging out when you're in the same place sounds like a good thing.

Long_Division said...

I've had two non-relationships in my life. One of them turned into a relationship (which ended three years later on great terms) and the other turned into one of my very best friends. Keep it up, I say.

Sorry I've been AWOL--thesis is due on August 18th. I just got my head above water and thought I'd say hello!

laura b. said...

I think it is fine to have a casual relationship like that. As you say, there are advantages and disadvantages, but why close the door on a friendship (even with benefits) just because it isn't going to last forever and ever...what does?

Tera said...

Oh my goodness, you had me where he said he can't tell you, "no" to anything you ask him...I'm almost drooling!

BTW...I had a long distance relationship once, and it worked out for several months until I found a more local guy!

The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: said...

You have your shit together more than you think. I love that you are able to lay down ground rules (and then follow them) and enjoy the man-moment.

evil-e said...

Evening comment this time.

First off, attraction is the gateway to most relationships. You have to see something attractive to be attracted to it. Most of the time.

I like the part where you mention "weekend you". It is true. Most people that know me from work situations think I am a total stiff. When Renee first met me she thought I was, in her words "a church boy". (insert big red X from Family Feud here, with sound effects)Getting to know the second and third sides of people is very important. If all you see is one aspect you are obviously not seeing it all.

Churlita said...

Rel,

Yeah. I'm definitely not pushing anything. I'm just seeing how it goes.

Mrs.,

I'm avoiding the term relationship, because that implies things that we can't really have when we don't talk every week and only see each other once a month, but I'm not sure what people call it instead.

Tara,

It's hard to gauge how he feels about my little rules. He said okay, but it wasn't like he seemed all that enthusiastic about what I said either.

Susan,

That's exactly what I mean. I'm not sure what's okay. I'm not a big phone talker, but I would like to at least hear from him once a week to see how things are going, you know? That one time I texted to ask him if he was still coming to visit, I just said that since we were in a "unique situation", I didn't want to assume anything.

Mr Atrocity,

I have to have that with any romantic liaison. It's all about expectations with me, so if I know what to expect, I can rest a little more easily.

Nor,

It feels really healthy for the most part. There are times where it's a little confusing or frustrating, but he's a good guy to have this with.

Dj,

That's exactly what we're trying to do here. We'll see how it all pans out...

Poptart,

Go out dancing with your friends boyfriend's single friends.

Minyo,

It is for now and when it's not good anymore, I'm sure we'll just quit it.

Long-Division,

Yea! It's good to hear from you. Good luck on your thesis.

LauraB.,

Exactly. I jsut want to make sure that neither one of us comes out of this with resentments and hurt feelings.

Tera,

I know. The best thing was that he meant it. Very sexy.

Evil-E,

It's true, but attraction only gets you so far. This town is full of attractive guys who are totally stupid and boring. So meeting an interesting and sweet attractive guy was very nice.

Yeah, weekend me is a little different than weekday me. Plus, at home I'm pretty quiet and nerdy, which is much different than I am in public. He has never seen at home me either.

AlienCG said...

I'm no good at giving relationship advice, so I won't. Just take it slowly and calmly (I think).

emmaenlighted said...

I like that you're still open about it, and that you realize all these factors. It shows what a mature, flexible, and open-minded person you are. Best of luck from me to you :)