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Old 06-28-2012, 12:27 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Default Safer sex, trust, and long-distance relationships

I talked briefly about a potential new relationship in my blog, but it's had me thinking a lot about the safe/safer sex aspect, and other things.

Basically, I live in NYC and he lives in Brazil. He is getting involved in a business which will bring him to NYC two to four times per year, and he's expressed that he'd like to see me again. He seems eager to start a relationship with me. So far, we've only met and chatted for a bit, then had dinner together the next night, talked some more, and made out a bit, nothing more.

I'm trying to figure out if I am actually interested in him, but a few things have me a little confused and unsure about how this can possibly work. It's not really the distance factor, in terms of us being able to get close or maintain a relationship, but it has to do with how to manage certain things due to the distance.

One thing that keeps coming up for me is a good deal of skepticism. I know this sounds self-deprecating, but I don't understand why he finds me so appealing that he chased me for almost two city blocks to talk to me. When we had dinner and were talking about relationships and his possibly visiting me, he said something like "Who knows, I might fall in love with you." But statements like that are just so suspicious to me.

He is a much younger guy, says he is a doctor, and supposedly getting divorced. He tells me his wife already moved back to Europe to be with her family and that they've been separated for a while. Apparently he works in his practice about 60 hours a week and looks forward to his trips to New York as a getaway, in addition to a new business thing he's getting into. In my mind, I just don't know how I can really believe and trust someone who lives so far away, and comes from a different culture. How do I verify anything he says?

And I keep thinking, really, why me, an overweight woman 16 years older than he? With all the beautiful young women in Brazil? He said he thinks I am beautiful, but could there be something else he would want out of a relationship with me? Dumb questions, I guess, but the distance just makes me wonder if I should just take his words at face value, although I am usually very good at reading people and he seems like a good, genuine person.

The other thing is how it will work if I ask him to get tested for STIs. Medical websites about STDs and STIs are always saying that hooking up with people from other countries is always a bigger risk. How would it work? Have him get tested here in NYC? Have him bring his test results from Brazil? Then what kind of agreements do we have in place when I wouldn't ever really know what he's doing, far away in another country? And especially since it would have to be a more casual type thing, not polyfidelitous. How do you people in LDRs work this out?

And what if he comes to my city for his next visit, and I don't feel ready to have sex with him yet, just because I may want to be cautious. Is that unreasonable of me? He probably only stays a week here at a time. But I feel that if he really wants something to develop between us, he needs to be patient for me to adjust to such parameters.

The thoughts in my head may have been tumbling out here in a convoluted, confusing way, so I hope I'm making sense. I just have a lot of questions about the practical aspects, I suppose, of this situation and how to manage all the doubts. I don't think it's impossible, but others here may have some feedback and tips that I may not have thought of. Any kind of input is welcome, I'm just not sure of how I feel about this at all.
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Last edited by nycindie; 06-28-2012 at 12:29 AM.
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:45 AM
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Some people are attracted to people who are older than them. Some people are attracted to people who are heavier than our culture's ideal. Some people are attracted to other people's spirits and personalities, with their physical bodies entering relatively little into it. This guy could be any of these. Unless his plan is to crash at your place and then steal your stuff in the night, or con you with a story of woe and take your cash, I can't imagine what an alternative motive from him might be. I mean, it's not like you're a rich heiress he can bilk. I would just go with it, while staying in touch with your intuition to see if anything seems shady.

As for STI's, someone down the street can lie to you about their safer sex practices just as easily as someone halfway across the world. It comes down to a couple of old adages. Trust but verify -- it's perfectly ok to ask him to get tested in NYC with you. And hope for the best but prepare for the worst -- insist on barriers.

Certainly I would say it's fine to expect him to wait until you're completely comfortable... that should *always* be the standard, right? Plus, it's not like he's coming to NYC just to visit you, he'd be coming there anyway, you're just a bonus. And anticipation makes the prize sweeter, yes?
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:53 AM
Pretzels Pretzels is offline
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*cough* green card *cough*

How long have you spent with this fellow? If you're the suspicious type, I highly recommend against a LDR under almost all circumstance. There's just too much that you can't know that will drive you crazy.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:53 AM
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I realized after I logged off that I wanted to come back and add that I did not post the "why me" stuff just to fish for compliments or anything like that. It's just I am wondering how one establishes trust and gets to know someone when there is such vast distance in time and space between seeing the person.

I'm still married (separated) and he knows that, so marrying me to get a green card is not an option for a while, although it did occur to me. He did say that he sees his long hours as a necessity for the next few years, and he seems to love his work. And he stays in very nice hotels, dresses well, seems comfortably well-off.

It's almost too perfect.

I'm not normally suspicious, I guess that's why I am having a hard time with all these doubts. I'm just wrangling the LDR aspect.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:46 AM
Tonberry Tonberry is offline
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I think rushing sex that you are not comfortable with because you won't have another opportunity for a while would be a mistake. Have sex the next time he visits after you are fine with it, and not a second sooner. And if you are fine with it the day after he leaves, oh well, he'll be back if it's going to last, right?

I can't say what attracted him to you, and if it does seem suspicious, stay on your guard, but whatever you look like, remember people have different tastes. It could be that all the "pretty, young" females in Brazil seem to look better to you (and might to other people, too, which could have been your experience) but to him you're exactly what he's attracted to.
If that's the case, it's possible he saw you, thought you were his dream female, physically speaking, and wanted to approach you and not let you go.
If that's the case, he'll be fine with waiting until you're ready. If you're that special to him, he won't want to risk ruining it, as frustrated as he might get.

Either way, sex because you think you'll feel guilty if you don't seems like a terrible idea. You don't owe him sex because he finds you attractive and he's nice to you. This reminds me of insecure teenagers who have sex when they're not ready.

I don't mean to insult you here, and I'm sorry if I seemed disrespectful. You're someone who has shown good judgment in the past and a lot of maturity, and I think you realise that pressured sex is a bad idea. Just don't torture yourself over it, and be confident. If he gets upset about it he wasn't worth it in the first place. If he's really too good to be true, he'll be fine with it.

Good luck, and I hope everything is true despite being so perfect. Keep an eye out for anything fishy, but don't forget to also enjoy the good times
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:36 PM
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All the stuff I was saying was just the rambling in my head, to show the thoughts I've been having about it. I know I wouldn't have sex if I didn't want to. It was all just to illustrate the problems I see inestablishing trust in a LDR. How do we do it?
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:44 PM
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The STI thing is tricky, so safer sex all-round, I'd say, unless he is willing to get tested here and share the results, but even then, how do you know what other sexual relations he has on his travel?

The thing that bothers me is the thing about his wife - he says they are separated - how do you verify that in any way? He may be a happily married guy in Brazil with kids, and he is looking to set up a relationship for himself when he makes his frequent trips to NYC. that's definitely not unheard-of. The question if, how much you care about that, I suppose.
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Old 06-28-2012, 05:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycindie View Post
...the problems I see inestablishing trust in a LDR. How do we do it?

Well, I'd chat online a lot. I don't think you like to do that, tho. How about Skype? (but again, with your current financial situation, I don't think you even have internet at home... ) And then meeting him irl and spending time together, getting a feel for his interests, communication skills and the like.

Eventually, with lots of communication, you will get a sense of the real him.

You and he don't need to be Romeo and Juliet to have a certain kind of fulfillment. If he only comes to town 2-4 times a year, it could remain a nice casual FWB kind of thing.

And of course, a voluptuous experienced pretty lady of a certain age is wicked attractive to many men. I keep telling you that, you keep not believing it!
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:46 AM
sparklepop sparklepop is offline
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I'm sorry if I've missed this somewhere...

How long have you known him?

Did you meet him randomly in NYC and this is how it all started?

If this helps, I'll tell you about my situation.

I'm in an LDR with my GF. I'm in the UK, she's in California.

We met online last March.

We didn't meet in person until October last year.

Practically every day since we've met, we've spent about 4-8 hours a night on Skype, talking, video calls, texts, emails, the whole lot.

We actually feel we have a deeper relationship now, because most of it has been based around conversations on the phone.

We have an extremely deep level of trust.

Honestly... with your Brazilian guy... unless you are Skyping with him every night, it's going to be difficult to build trust.

You can't actually build anything unless time is put in. You also can't prove that he doesn't have a wife in Brazil.

STDs... well, I don't know so much about there being a bigger risk in people from other countries. It's probably more the case that more women sleep with foreign men, because of the romance of it all. So yes.. haha... he may have been around the block a few times... who knows?

The only way you can protect yourself from that is to use condoms and do not perform oral on him. Even if someone had shown me their test results, I still use condoms / no oral, until I trust them.

I definitely don't think you need to be ready to sleep with him next time he comes to visit. If he's coming for work anyway, then seeing you will be a bonus. Even if he's coming just to see you? You still don't have to do anything.

There is a chance that he could be genuine. I will admit that my girlfriend is ten years older than me and much bigger than anyone I've ever dated. But I think she's the most amazing woman I've ever met. It could be like that for him too.

I'll keep checking back on this question in case you add more details
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  #10  
Old 07-06-2012, 05:43 PM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
I'm sorry if I've missed this somewhere...

How long have you known him?

Did you meet him randomly in NYC and this is how it all started?
Yes, totally random. I met him on the street. Hey, I've dated guys I met on the street before, or in the subway, at the laundromat, etc. I met my husband at the post office. NYC is not as unfriendly as people say!

I was standing outside a bar talking to two people as he was coming out of the bar. I was saying something to them, he must've thought I was talking to him and turned to me. He said, "What did you say?" I repeated myself, and he made a comment and I acknowledged him, but then I just turned back to the other two people and said goodbye to them, since I was already in the process of leaving anyway. I left, and almost two blocks later, I heard someone yelling something. I turned around and he was trying to catch up with me, so I stopped. The streets were crowded with people, it was a Thursday night in an area where lots of bars and clubs are (Thursday nights here are like Friday nights anywhere else), so it wasn't like I stopped in a desolate deserted street to talk to a stranger chasing me, or anything like that.

We stood there and talked for about ten or fifteen minutes and he asked me out to dinner the next night, because he was leaving NYC for Brazil the day after that. So, I went to dinner with him and that's when we shared more personal info with each other, and he told me about his coming to the city a few times a year for this new business venture. We took a little walk after dinner. He was very much a gentleman. Before parting, he expressed that he would like to see me when he comes back here, he wanted me to email him, and at the end of the night he kissed me. It was the only time we'd made physical contact all that night, and it was pretty hot.

He already has my email address because we shared it the first night we met so we could coordinate when/where to meet for dinner. But I think he wants to leave it up to me and not be pushy, so he hasn't contacted me yet. It's been about three weeks now, since we met.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
Honestly... with your Brazilian guy... unless you are Skyping with him every night, it's going to be difficult to build trust.

You can't actually build anything unless time is put in. You also can't prove that he doesn't have a wife in Brazil.
I don't have the energy to invest in anything daily with anybody, even if they lived around the corner from me. I'm not the type of person who needs contact every day with people I'm involved with. I can see a lover just once a week and that works well for me. Maybe I could see Skyping with this man once a week or so until he comes back to the city. That's a good idea, as we can feel like we're actually having a conversation instead of just emails. I know I signed up for a Skype account once, and my new little laptop has a built-in camera, though it's not the best quality. I've never actually Skyped before and I'm too broke right now to buy a separate new webcam thingie. But I'm somewhat tech-savvy and I can figure it out. I guess I'd start with a thoughtful email first, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
STDs... well, I don't know so much about there being a bigger risk in people from other countries. It's probably more the case that more women sleep with foreign men, because of the romance of it all. So yes.. haha... he may have been around the block a few times... who knows?

The only way you can protect yourself from that is to use condoms and do not perform oral on him. Even if someone had shown me their test results, I still use condoms / no oral, until I trust them.
Whenever I've gone to get tested they always ask if I've had "sex with a foreigner," LOL. I believe the level of risk is connected to what country they're from. I don't know.

I would always use condoms anyway, and I guess I would just have to use restraint and not have oral sex. I just don't know how, practically, asking him to get tested will work if he's only going to be here a week or so. I guess I could bring him to a free clinic. But then wait for results? I guess I will have to work out the logistics.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklepop View Post
I definitely don't think you need to be ready to sleep with him next time he comes to visit. If he's coming for work anyway, then seeing you will be a bonus. Even if he's coming just to see you? You still don't have to do anything.

There is a chance that he could be genuine.
I have a feeling he is genuine, but it just seems like it's almost too good to be true, and it's the logistical/practical ways of conducting the relationship that have me stymied.

I do see that it would be much better if we take time to develop the relationship and become more familiar with each other via Skype before he comes back. And then I will know better how I feel when he actually gets here.
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"Love and the self are one . . ." ~Leo Buscaglia

Click here for a Solo Poly view on hierarchical relationships
Click here to find out why the Polyamorous Misanthrope is feeling disgusted.

Last edited by nycindie; 05-01-2014 at 04:42 AM.
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