A few months back, when I asked The Pedant why he’d bought me the bondage gear to use on him, he said it was “an expression of gratitude. I had reason to expect that you’d enjoy it, and you’ve been good to me.”
I was frankly kind of gobsmacked to hear that because just off the top of my head…
Things The Pedant has done for me:
- Helped me clean my apartment (he offered, I didn’t ask)
- Bought me countless meals
- Bought me groceries
- Talked me down from various “ledges” when I was anxious
- Bought me numerous little knickknacks that make my life easier
- Given me his old Blackberry and an old digital camera when I needed them
- Given me assloads of tech support for my laptops, phone(s), router
- Helped me shave my head like a zillion times
- Today he called my local public transit’s lost and found department over a hat I lost
Things I have done for The Pedant:
- Proofread his resume/cover letter when he applied for a supervisor position at his job
- Tied him up and given him orgasms
…So at first I thought “…wait, all I have to do to make him grateful to a point of buying me expensive gifts is have sex with him?”
But upon reflection I think what he’s grateful for is the acceptance I show him.
The Pedant is not given to expressions of vulnerability, so it’s not like he ever told me he was bothered by previous partners not “getting” him. But he’s mentioned certain recurring relationship clashes (in his nonchalant way) a bunch of times and I’m realizing that the repetition is probably coming from him having been hurt by these exes’ views of him and still not being over it.
At this point I am by far his longest relationship ever, by pretty much any metric. It seems entirely feasible that he sees me as having “put up with him” longer than other people have, while being exasperated with him at least a little bit less and being much more clear in my expectations, and that this is what he’s grateful for. Hell, maybe it’s why he loves me.
And I love him because he puts up with me. He is so very hot, and I love the sex, but we don’t necessarily have all that much in common or anything. I didn’t find my romantic spark with him via the usual route of shared interests etc. I made out with him because I thought he was hot, and eventually the momentum of that carried us to a place where he was doing sweet things for me all the time, and I got smitten.
On paper the idea of two people essentially loving each other because they love each other sounds hollow and arbitrary but in practice I am so goddamned happy with him right now.
Also, can I just say, something about the relationship has shifted and I’m not sure how. The first time we dated I couldn’t tell if he had feelings for me or we were just fucking or what. Now his devotion is so obvious to me. I feel loved, steadily, in a way that I did not before – like at some point when we got back together a switch got flipped. I’m not sure if I’m better able to read between the lines with him now, or if he’s making more of an effort with me, or if my anxiety bullshit happened to let up for just long enough for him to sneak under my general mistrust, or if our FeelingsTalk from just before we broke up made me feel a bit more secure about him…maybe a bit of all of those things.
This all makes me wonder how many of The Pedant’s previous relationship clashes were due to mismatched love languages. Maybe a bunch of his exes didn’t feel loved because they didn’t realize that the little favours he does, often without fanfare, are all I-love-yous; maybe these women needed mushy words first and foremost, or quality time, and when he’d sporadically come by with an offering of a second-hand cell phone and shovel their walkway it was just like “meh.”
Right now I feel like I am fully receiving everything The Pedant is putting out there in a way I wasn’t before. And it is epic.