I came here to angst about The Pedant not having answered my text yet, but as I began to type, he finally replied! Here’s a live transcript of the ensuing conversation.
My initial text: Question: would you be open to us NOT using condoms sometime? (Subject to certain conditions.)
Pedant: Probably not, under the circumstances.
Me: The circumstances being…?
Pedant: Neither of us is monogamous. 😛
Me: Well, the aforementioned conditions would be that 1) we get tested and 2) we start wrapping you up again if either of us sleeps with someone else. Which may only mean one night of barrier-free-ness I suppose. But dammit, I’ve never experienced it and I want to!
Pedant: I’m sorry, run that last bit by me again?
Me: [Long-winded reiteration of the “I realize it might only end up being for one night, but…” part, which is the part I assumed was confusing him.]
Pedant: I meant the bit about never having experienced it.
Me: Ummm I don’t know how to say it more clearly than that. Female birth control is all horrifying and I refuse to use it. It’s always been condoms. Even when I was married. And I’m feeling like I’ve missed out.
Pedant: And I’m the first guy you’ve had who’s taken the ultimate birth-control precaution. [he’s referring, of course, to his vasectomy.]
Me: That’s obviously the major qualifier. Also I like and trust you. And I like your penis. 😀
Pedant: I’ll have to think it over. I generally don’t like going without because that might make me more likely to slip up. [The fact that he didn’t jump at the chance to go in bareback is such a good sign, and totally affirms my trust in him…]
Me: Like, you don’t want to lose the habit of reaching for one every time?
Pedant: Exactly. [Here I’m very tempted to point out that I’ve actually been the one to put a condom on him every time we’ve had sex; he’s always been lying there tied up. So would going bareback really change his habits…? But I don’t want to come off as pressuring him so I don’t say it.]
Me [trying to gauge risk factors, not to mention how long we’d be able to do without condoms if The Pedant decided to go for it]: How many partners do you currently have, btw?
Pedant: Besides yourself, two occasional partners. [I’m curious to know what counts as “occasional.” Am I his main partner in any way, or am I “occasional” too?]
Me: I’m auditioning partners but only actually sleeping with you (and there’s my American friend who’s visiting in June).
[Awww, fuck it, I’m just gonna ask what he means by “occasional”…]
Me: What counts as “occasional”? Am I occasional?
Pedant: I was under the impression you had more partners. Occasional in this case is once every couple of months or so.
Me: I am extremely discerning. Since I’ve been single, nobody’s made the cut but you [this is a blatant attempt at flattery. Although it’s true; I am discerning and he is the only one I’ve seen fit to sleep with since Minx left.]. I’d LIKE to be getting laid more often [this is a hint that I’m open to seeing him more often than I currently do], so I’m putting feelers out there, but it’ll likely be a WHILE before anything much happens.
[At this point there’s a long silence and I’m bored and want more of his attention so I send him another message just to prompt a reply…]
Me: What gave you the idea I have a bunch of other partners?
Pedant: The fact that you’re actively auditioning.
Me: Auditioning in this case means I have an ad on FetLife and I’m meeting the respondents for coffee to see if there’s potential there. Sorry if I was unclear. I wasn’t trying to mislead you! [I refrain from adding that most times when I’m auditioning dudes, they’re too flaky even to get to the point of coffee…I want The Pedant to feel like he has a little competition, and that I’m sleeping with him because I want to and not because he’s my only option].
[This conversation feels like it can’t go any further. But I want to formally sign off in some way. And I want to remind him of the bareback idea so he doesn’t forget to think about it, but I need to do it in a way that doesn’t seem like I’m hovering over him expectantly, pressuring him to say yes. So…]
Me: Anyway, thanks for considering my request [I debated using the word “offer” instead but since I’m the one who wants bareback and he’s being reticent, “request” seems more appropriate]. I’m glad I have someone in my life that I can have that conversation with, whatever the outcome turns out to be.