“She wasn’t just cleaning out her locker, she was cleaning out her life.” (Kevin Arnold on The Wonder Years as Winnie Cooper got ready to leave town.)
This week, I broke things off with the Mayor of Kittentown. For the third time. I’ve never been quite able to figure out what doesn’t work between us, only that something doesn’t. I’ve known almost the whole time that he wasn’t a romantic match, and maybe I’m just not an FWB kind of girl.
Remember last week when I was feeling fretful about guys only liking me for my boobs? Here’s part of why: I was texting with MKT, just catching up because we hadn’t seen each other in a while. When I asked how things were going with the other woman he’s dating, he said she wasn’t really exciting him too much and
“Besides, she needs bigger boobs. ;)”
I sent him back an “Eeeeeeew” for talking about a woman’s body that way, it really got under my skin. Yes, I’ve heard and enjoyed guys saying much filthier things, but in dirty-talk context and therefore consensual—how would she feel if she knew he was saying that about her? He isn’t poly so I can’t expect him to know he shouldn’t compare us, but the fact that that’s the first way he could think of to say he liked me better, not my heart, my face, my general enthusiasm for B-movies and pancakes, just my boobs, of course.
The trouble with being new to sex with guys is that I don’t always notice when I don’t like something until it is kind of way too late to do anything about it. Like I’ve said before, I like for my boobs to get lots of attention, but the way he fixated on them was kind of childish. “Boobies!” He would say often, even on days where I was feeling objecty from other jackasses. And the fact that I was feeling objecty from other jackasses always made me want to give MKT a pass.
Is worrying about being an object old-fashioned or prude? It certainly does seem to be getting in the way of my fun.
He said insensitive things in other ways, too. On out first date he said something demeaning about a homeless person, he made jokes about them regularly. I think that’s a mainstream thing to do, but I thought it showed a lack of empathy—a lot of my dealbreakers just seem like guidelines for being a decent human being, but I still feel obligated to compromise them sometimes. I am a perfectionist and I don’t want to be, but I guess limits are limits. Close to the end of our relationship, he told me he’d once tweeted that the woman being loud on the bus behind him “Should choke on a bucket of cocks.” That’s hard for a girl like me to get past, even though, again, comments like that are part of everyday culture. I’m sure plenty of decent guys say things like that every day nowadays, it sucks.
Anyway, those seemed like small things compared to the fact that he was being so sweet to me almost always. I wanted to like him because he liked me. He has the prettiest green eyes and (when it isn’t leering) an angelic smile. He called me beautiful and held me when I was sad. Sex was always fun between us, even if we both wanted to be on the bottom. He’d usually take the top and make me a very loud, happy girl. His neighbors probably got woken up more than once.
But I can’t quite get away from the idea that being together when we aren’t/won’t be in love is a kind of using each other. It feels objectifying to both of us. I wish that I didn’t feel that way—I am very, very frustrated that sex is such a big deal to me, it’s really gunking up my experiments. Maybe it isn’t a matter of rejecting the whole idea of FWBs, maybe just this particular situation didn’t work?
All in all, I’m grateful to him. He was such a good first-in-a-long-time—I appreciate that so much. It’s hard to let him go and scary to have an almost-empty dance card, guywise. Aside from my date with the Gentleman this weekend, I’m turning my attention back to my friends for a while. I’d love to be a little more healed before the next guy comes along.
I wish the Mayor of Kittentown all the luck. I think the lessons here are: treat people like whole people as much as I can. Get better at saying (kindly and directly) what bothers me. Get better at listening to my body and heart, and don’t cling to things that don’t work. Those are good lessons.
I’ll miss him, his cats, his episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Thank you, pal.