The Doll responded to my last message pretty much as I thought he would: it seems that his main reason for wanting to know about my activities ahead of time is because he’s afraid I’m gonna start really liking someone else and he’ll get neglected or forgotten (he felt that these reasons were petty and selfish and “bad,” but shared them nonetheless in the spirit of transparency). To his credit, he also had some not-fear-based reasons, like just being happy for me that I was having fun and curious to know what I was up to. But he realizes that he doesn’t specifically need to hear about my plans ahead of time in order to indulge his curiosity – I could just as easily relate my exploits afterward.
But yeah – it seems like mostly he made the “tell me ahead of time” rule because he’s afraid of the unknown: he has no idea how many people I’m seeing or who they are, and for whatever reason this was how he chose to keep track. It seems obvious now that I should have given him a rundown of my general situation right from the beginning so it wasn’t a big scary unknown for him, but he’s just starting out with the poly thing (and with dating in general) and I wasn’t sure he could handle any details yet. He didn’t ask me how many people I’m seeing or who they are, so I thought maybe this was one of those things where he could accept polyamory in theory but if I gave him details, the other guys would suddenly become real – not theoretical anymore – and he would freak out. Better (I thought) to only give him the amount of disclosure he asked for, and then maybe as time went on and he saw that my other trysts didn’t affect our interactions, he would begin to open up and ask me more stuff as he became ready.
Actually, maybe that’s more-or-less what’s happening now.
Anyway, I responded by telling him I totally understand his fears (because I have them, too!) and that they’re totally normal and not “bad” or “wrong” or anything – what makes things good or bad is how we handle those fears. I explained to him that I’m not currently seeking out anyone new, both because I don’t really have the time and energy for new people and because I’m deliberately refraining for now so that The Doll has a chance to get used to nonmonogamy in baby steps. I told him that mostly I’m just seeing The Pedant – who’s been in my life in a romantic capacity for at least a year and a half now – and that any others I might canoodle with are old friends that I didn’t even fall for back when I was totally single. Oh, except for The Hedonist – he’s new, but perpetually busy and I really don’t know where that might go (if anywhere).
I then said that can’t promise I’ll never pursue anyone new, or that I won’t fall for someone else and start spending tons of time with them, but just for the record I think The Doll is smart and attractive and funny and pretty much the submissive of my dreams and that the intensity I felt when we played the other day is something that rarely happens to me…so it’s not like he’ll be easily eclipsed.
And I asked The Doll if there’s anything else I can do to make things less scary for him. We’ll see what he says. Stay tuned for the next thrilling instalment!
In other news, The Pedant has followed up with me re: fixing my various and sundry faulty laptops. It’s nice to know he meant this offer seriously – he made it pretty soon after sexytimes so I was tentatively treating it as a “we just had sex and that makes me feel mushy toward you” affirmation rather than a literal offer of help, but if he’s still talking about it days after leaving my house then I guess we’re good to go. 🙂 He has also volunteered to re-shave the shaved parts of my head (which are getting pretty fuzzy) sometime soon, and claims he can teach me a fool-proof method of doing it myself by feel. I’m not sure I believe him about the doing it by feel, but it warms my cockles that he’s willingly participating in my bodily maintenance. It seems like a sweetly intimate thing for him to do.
Annnnnd this is another good reason for me to be poly: sex + acts of service = Cowgirl feeling perhaps a bit more attached than she should. Seeing other people adds perspective and keeps me from obsessing on any one person and making that relationship out to be more than it is.