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Old 12-31-2013, 05:37 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Default I'm a hinge, again

Ocean and I are heading off to the city where Lobe lives, tomorrow. The two of us (Ocean and I) are fans of an international band that's playing there, and we got tickets. I recently shared their music with Lobe, and he also likes them, so is coming to the gig with us too.

2nd Jan is Ocean and my wedding anniversary.

We'll be in the city for five nights. Lobe is really excited to see me. We've been talking of it like an occasion of "me visiting", even though it obviously will be different from me visiting by myself!

I'd like to sleep with Lobe every night apart from the 2nd (and maybe one other night) while we're there. Ocean says he's fine with this (in fact, he offered) but I'm still nervous. Ocean's been stressed over work lately and, though we've seen quite a bit of each other, we haven't had a proper date for a while now. I think we're good, but there's no substitute for quality time for settling the nerves.

The original plan was for Ocean (and possibly me and Lobe) to stay with a friend of Ocean's. However, his friend's plans have changed, and they can only put us up for a couple of nights. On top of that, Lobe has to work some of the days we're there, and it seems public transport isn't too great between Ocean's friend's house and Lobe's work.

One fallback option was for Ocean and I to stay at Lobe's place. Only problem is his place is kinda full (his brother and girlfriend are living with him at the moment), so there's only the couch. Not a big deal in itself... but Lobe knows this would also mean a lot of questions from his family (who don't really know about me, and definitely not about the whole situation.)

Lobe was initially hesitant, not wanting to go there. He said he generally prefers to keep his private life private. But on quick reflection, he said he's okay with anything.

Another fallback option was we find an affordable option for Ocean to stay somewhere nearby Lobe. I think that could also work, although there aren't any cheap places for the 3rd. But there are for the 4th and 5th, which could help ease things.

I spoke with Ocean about it this morning, and he said "I'll go for the couch." He was gearing up for a solid work day, and didn't want to get into a long conversation. I said "I know this is more complex than just you and me going away together for a holiday. Cos from Lobe and my perspective this is also us hoping to spend time together since we're long distance..." "Yup," he said.

I couldn't tell from his face or tone if he was bothered by this dynamic complicating what could have been a simpler holiday time. We were eating breakfast. He was reading the news. I rubbed my toes through his toes, and reminded myself we could talk about this later.

In a post* over two years ago I wrote:

* if you follow the link, note S = Ocean and C = Grotto
Now and then I still need that almost non-rational reassurance, but it's far less often than before. We actually developed a speed solution for when I need reassurance. It's kind of embarrassing but it works...

When we're over talking and I just need a strong sign from him that things are cool, I flap my arms like a penguin and make this little growl-whine noise, and he pats me on the head and says "pats pats" (like "there there"), then we laugh at ourselves and kiss and we're done!
I had a moment last night that I did the penguin (a side-ways, miniature version, lying next to Ocean in bed!) when I was trying to sort out the accommodational logistics of the holiday, after hearing from Ocean's friend that there'd been a change of plans from their end. Wow, been a long time since I've needed to whip out that one!

It's only now and then that I feel the pressures of being in a 'hinge' position. Maybe it's a constant dynamic, but for me it only manifests in immediate situations where practicalities or expectations have the potential for getting messy. I find it very difficult not to emotionally take on the full responsibility for everything working out. I know I need to relax, and let people speak and negotiate for themselves. But, being in the middle, it's hard to shrug off the sense that you are being looked to for cues as to how things are going to work. Maybe it's a real thing, maybe it has to be this way.

I do my best. Try not to fret.

What's good is the first night I'm sleeping with Lobe, probably at his place (while Ocean is by himself at his friend's place). Then I will spend the 2nd night (Ocean & my anniversary) with him, probably without Lobe there. Then there's just three more days together at Lobe's place (including concert night, omg, hinge dancing! haha, I really didn't think this through did I?)

Both Lobe and Ocean are really chilled people. Ocean said he will unfortunately most likely have research work to do on holiday anyway (unfinished bizniz). So much of this may be a non-issue.

This is why people are monogamous j/k

Breathe. It's all good.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:01 PM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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It's times like these that my brain starts thinking of 20 different options on how we can do things and I start to fret about how it effects everyone. I finally learned that it's much better to just turn to my husband and say, here's the problem... let me know what you come up with for a solution. This way he's not confused by all my "options" and I know he's ok with the solution.
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Old 01-06-2014, 12:49 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Nice option, SNeacail! I use that strategy too, though sometimes it seems much more convenient for everyone if I figure out some possible solutions first, for other people to choose from. Hmm. Perhaps I could scale back even further though! Something to think about for future similar situations.

I've had an immense few days in relationship land. Since New Year, really. (By the way, happy 2014, everyone!)

One notable event: Lobe drunkenly broke up with me on Friday night. Standing on the platform at midnight, waiting for a train home, he says: "I think we're done here. I'm sorry. I'm not cut out for this." It was the emotional equivalent of walking into a glass wall. Fucking hurts, in case you have the luck of not knowing this.

I couldn't properly talk with him about it at the time, because he was in a very fucked up mood. He feels things in quite a monogamous way, and his favourite way of communicating is in person, more touch than words, so long-distance non-monogamy is a somewhat nightmare scenario for him. I could tell he was speaking from a place of (totally justifiable!) fear, and also anger and resentment...

I also wasn't sure how much to take him at his word. Was the alcohol making him say things in a skewed way, out of perspective with the wider emotional context? Or was it facilitating him finally being able to say something he needed to say, something he meant to say, something I need to accept? I couldn't tell. (In the end, both were true in their own way.)

Anyway, this was one of the worst nights of my life. At the time I actually ran through nights that had been worse for me, than this, and I couldn't think of many. Maybe two or three. Damn. One reason it hurt so mcuh was related to another 'notable event', the previous night, which I will probably write about later.


By early morning, Lobe had sobered up, and we'd touched enough to start making sense of things. We had un-break-up sex. Then the rest of the weekend was good, though tender.

Ocean was a trooper, through it all.

Ocean & I back to the other city today. If you are losing track of where and who and what, don't worry... so am I More tales soon.
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Old 01-06-2014, 02:07 AM
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nycindie nycindie is offline
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Even with near-breakups, communication snafus, and whatever other difficulties come along... I so-o-o-oooo want your life ( it doesn't hurt that you always have great insights and are able to always turn issues into learning experiences).
The world opens up... when you do.

"Oh, oh, can't you see? Love is the drug for me." ~Bryan Ferry
"Love and the self are one . . ." ~Leo Buscaglia "

An excellent blog post on hierarchy in polyamory:
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:06 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Ha, nycindie - be careful what you wish for

First fortnight of 2014 was a crazed smear of relationship stuff. How did we end up with the laundry in such a convuluted bundle? Pant legs tangled in bra straps, socks in the pillowcases and shirts buttoned into each other... fuck.

I wrote through some of the hardest parts, but am keeping it to myself for now.

What I like about having a plurality of intimate connections is it keeps me coming back to the only solid thing: myself, how I'm grounded.

Yes, we can support and care for each other. We can co-create, laze in hammocks with our eyes closed and dream visions together, build towers like we're children, block by wooden block til they're taller than any of us, taller than all of us combined, as high as we can reach together, balanced on shoulders, backs and knees. Or perhaps we're adults today, sharing the serious fun of engineers and architects, with one blank scroll and several sharp-pointed pens. We can make a poem that way, too.

But when it comes to responsibility, integrity and authenticity, when it comes to "staying true" to a path, the path is mine alone.

So we travel together. For a short while, a long while, or the end of our journeying? See how we go.

Last edited by fuchka; 01-17-2014 at 12:09 AM.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:15 PM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Ocean's in our home country. He went over a week ago, to hang out with one of his best friends who was home for the holidays. We have other friends getting married there in a fortnight, and instead of flying back and forth, he decided to work from there for a few weeks. So I've been home alone! It's really wonderful. I've had some quite dark patches, but all good shadows to work through.

Haven't seen too much of Grotto. I caught up with him on Monday, and again today. Things are really good between us. He's working through his shit. We're communicating better. Still has potentialy for volatility, but it seems to be settling down.

I went for a swim yesterday, and a run today. It's been an age since I made time for those things. I do a lot of walking about in my daily life, and sex is good exercise, but there's nothing like repetitive foot falls or swim strokes to centre the mind.

Lobe's visiting me next weekend! There's some chance Grotto will be away, but if not, there may be a three-of-us catching up thing. A big topic that we Need to talk about Before we have any (more (yeah)) Accidents is: kids. Not sure it'll be the right time for that discussion, but it has to happen at some point.

Both Grotto and I underestimated how much work we'd have to do, to keep our shit together through all of this. Got more of a sense of things now. Slower. Pacing. Enough time to talk, touch, reassure, play. Space. Softness. Speaking up earlier rather than later. Pre-emptive, erring on the side of sharing.

Grotto's forming a game plan for talking with one of his close friends (a mutual friend of Lobe and Grotto's) about what's been going on. He wants to do this for various reasons. This friend currently lives in the same city as us, but is shifting cities soon to move in with Lobe. This somewhat increases the complications of the "where to live" question, because Lobe won't be free to relocate for at least a year. But, more pressingly, it will mean the cat will be out of the bag anyway, if I visit Lobe after this friend moves up (unless we sneak about, which Grotto wouldn't want, and - obviously - neither would Lobe or I.)

Grotto also wants to do it so he can move past this stage. Being open with his friends about the Lobe situation has been freaking him out quite a bit. A few friends know, but not the very inner circle yet. Last weekend, Grotto had a particularly bad time with one friend who scratched open the scars, made him revisit the hurt feelings and such. Some of the bruising is still tender... but we're mending.

One thing that apparently helped was me saying to Grotto that we couldn't go back, only forwards. But we did have a choice in how we went forwards. This inspired him do some thinking about how he wanted things to be. He has a lot of love for both me and Lobe, but he oscillates between feeling generous and caring towards us, to feeling fearful and selfish. I think that's normal... life's always a bit like that. Just sometimes big shakes can make us cycle faster or more violently, I think.

Anyway. Unless I royally fuck this up, I think the worst of it's over
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Old 01-20-2014, 03:07 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Lobe is visiting on Friday. Four sleeps, four sleeps! I am continuously finding myself tangled up with lust over him, like my paths are strewn with fishing nets. This desire? I cannot ignore or evade, it catches my ankles if I try to run.

He just texted me, as I typed the above. Evidently having booked flights:

"Btw, Friday, 8pm, I'm in [the city I live in]"


"Friday, 9pm, I'm in you"

Ah, fuck... I keel.

It's only been a week since I last saw him. (I was visiting last weekend, and I left on the Monday). Jesus! So frantic. I didn't think I had the time or energy for this. How is the rest of my life not suffering?

And yet, it's enabling me. Like how a workshift can invigorate the 'free time' of your day. Like eggwhites, I'm folding this energy into my other passions. A delicate business. I'm hopeful.

I want to be strong enough for this, productive enough to deserve the downtime. I don't want to abandon my own projects. But it doesn't feel like that kind of dynamic, anyway. Lobe, Grotto, Ocean have their own interests, the machines they tinker away at. Yes, play time together can sometimes distract, but in the end we respect and give support to each other's pursuits. Y'know, how friendship works
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Old 01-20-2014, 05:09 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Default One from the back catalogue

I said the first two weeks of 2014 were hectic in relationship land. This one was a biggie. I didn't share on this blog right away because I wanted to talk things through with Grotto and Lobe first, and process it a bit more myself.

There's no crisis at present. Tape around the crime scene reads "Caution: To be discussed".

Wrote this flying back from visiting Lobe around New Years (6 Jan):

I'm bleeding. It's both a disappointment and a reprieve: Not This Month. My period's a few days early --- also a blessing, of sorts.

Lobe and I may have slipped up this visit. I'm not sure. I fear yes, but I can't figure it out. Need to talk with Grotto. Ah, more, again.

A couple of months ago (maybe; my sense of time is a bit out of whack at the moment) I had a direct conversation with Grotto about his feelings re: Lobe coming inside me. Before that discussion, both Grotto and Lobe had separately mentioned to me an openness to a co-operative rather than competitive family making, more than one dad in the delivery room & such.

So, how serious was this? I asked Grotto. He said yes, in theory, but he was not yet comfortable with going there. He needed more time to process. He said he was open to it in principle, but thought (very correctly) that we should all chat first about how that would work in practice. Make sure we were all on the same page.

Since then, Grotto and I have talked about the issue a couple more times, but mostly we've been focusing on sorting other aspects of our relationship.

The most recent time this topic came up with Grotto was a few days before Christmas (I think). We had just teased out a bit more of the tension between us, and we had very loving sex on the couch. He came inside me, then we held each other and talked some more.

One thing I brought up was how it felt a bit territorial, for Grotto to come inside me when there was a current boundary in place against the same happening with Lobe. I felt a bit like a claimed country, with my body being owned in a way I wasn't entirely comfortable with.

I knew there was nothing territorial about Grotto's intent. It was more that the situation itself had that inherent imbalance. We decided to put the issue of pregnancy to one side, in order to focus on other things we needed to work through. This would include Grotto not coming inside me until we'd figured out the whole Grotto-me-Lobe baby dynamic.

Since then, Grotto and I have healed, deeply. We had an achingly close New Year's Eve: pitchforks deep into the caked mud of us, uprooting chunks of dense matter, clearing the ground. Big love, so big. The springtime felt light and fresh. The breeze was a life-giving breath.

I left Grotto in the morning on New Year's Day. He was a happy bug asleep in his bed. Ocean and I were flying out that afternoon. Before I left Grotto's place, I thought of revisiting the issue of pregnancy with him, but I didn't want to put another heavy issue on the end of a beautiful night. Clarity is best practice, I know. But sometimes you don't have the right moment.

Lobe and I had gotten close to the line at times, but had managed to respect the boundary so far. What I gambled on is that we could hold off this time too, until I had talked with Grotto properly. Reasonable enough, right?



Turns out the biological imperative had other ideas. We sailed way too close to the current and got dragged out twice, maybe three times. Yup, I don't even know how many times. The first time was mainly my recklessness. I was on top, stopped caring. Oh my god, I am unused to being this much of an animal. It is wonderful but also unnerving!

As soon as it happened, I realised that I may have fucked up AGAIN. Played 'let's make fire' with Grotto's emotions AGAIN. How could I do this, right after we'd been through a hellish few weeks?

But, hmm... maybe not. Maybe it's not so bad. I actually have no idea.

Was the boundary still in force? Yes, officially. No doubt about it. We have not had the discussion required to remove the boundary.

Would breaching the boundary hurt Grotto? I don't know. Given the very recent distress Grotto had been feeling, fresh punches to old bruises re: my boundary breaching with Lobe six months ago, this could be a very sensitive spot.

On the other hand, things feel very very different between Grotto and I now. We've sorted out a lot, if not all, of what was ailing us. I can imagine this being a non-issue for Grotto as much as I can imagine it being a major issue.

The fact that I don't know, means I've fucked up, I think! I knew this the first time it happened, and I said so. I said, "I actually don't know how Grotto will feel about this. I'm either on or over the line for him. This should not happen again unless I have talked things through with Grotto."

The second (and possible third) time, I actually don't know what happened. Things got confused, and if at all it was more Lobe's fault. That said, both of us share general responsibility for cultivating an environment not very conducive to always behaving well. Hmm...

A couple of points to give more context here.

First, Grotto and I (at least) are not the kind of folks who require strict adherence to rules. In almost everything, we are fluid and forgiving, respectful of each other's autonomy, taking responsibility for speaking up about our own needs and fears and desires. We are also bold experimenters, accepting risks and blind chance as a healthy part of daily life.

So while this might seem like a crazy situation to some people, to be "going with the flow" about an issue as serious as starting a family, it's somewhat typical for us.

Second, Lobe and I are physical. We mate. Oh yes, we make love, we have tenderness, we hold each other, we are playful and rough and all the rest. But there's a very powerful, base frequency which is simply: go. Fucking, go. And because of who he is, and how I feel about him, I have no defences against going there, no reservations at all. And he feels the same way. Despite how complex the practicalities, with other partners, long-distance, etc , there comes a point where we have nothing with any grip on us at all.

Ah, Christ.

On top of this, Lobe knows that this is the simplest path for him to make sense of us. That drive, at least, has a straight-forward trajectory. Thinking things through keeps getting clogged up: there's no logic to this, it's stupid. He should be avoiding this situation altogether. There are few reasons to have hope, few rational pegs to reassure him that this machine can hold its integrity. It's scary. And yet, he knows, fundamentally knows, that we can make it work.

Getting from here (being physically apart) to there (being phyically together) requires a leap of faith that his mind is unwilling to choose for itself. To be reckless as to pregnancy is him, jumping. And here I am, catching him.

But no, not just him and me. There's Grotto too, and Ocean. This could be so loving and supportive, if we do it right.

More conversations, most certainly more.

Update (7 Jan):

Talked with Grotto. Things are OKAY. He wasn't hurt or upset, although we acknowledged how much easier it was as a situation, because I'd already got my period. Bullet: dodged.

Grotto's vascillating at the moment about wanting kids or not. He thought he wanted to, but the reality of it is hitting him sometimes and freaking him out. He needs more time, he wants to feel stable before deciding to do this.

He's being surprisingly sensible! It's for the best, really. Seems wise. More than that, he says, it's necessary for his mental health.

Also, he is nervous that he will be rushed into things. That I will want kids with Lobe and just go ahead with that and leave him behind.

That sounds gross, and not something I'd want to do. On the other hand... what if that is what I want? I can't promise to save my body for someone, indefinitely. I'm not a personal baby making machine that you can reserve for if / when you're ready.

I know that's a harsh way of putting it, but I guess I'm aware that I need to be careful what I commit to people. Grotto has my heart. My love and my care. My support and admiration. I love how we talk, how we touch, how we untangle each other.

But sometimes he does move slower than me. A lot slower. And sometimes he says "let's do it" to something and then later, changes his mind. I know he'd prefer if I wasn't so much on the move always. If I could slow down and be more accommodating of his lumbering pace.

I'm the kind of person who sets off on her own adventures, and is happy for the company of anyone who wants to join, but also happy to be alone. I'm not so great at waiting for people who are unsure of what they want, or who are dragging their feet. An impatient imp.

Gah, I'm not sure how to deal with this.

Things with Lobe are new! I've only known him for about eight months!

I haven't told Lobe that I've got my period yet. I know I should tell him; he'd want to know. But I don't feel like talking about this long distance. I want to hold him, or at least see him, when I tell him. It isn't a big deal, on the surface, but there are emotions.
The take-home message for me is that we really shouldn't do this long-distance!

Grotto and I had a few times when he came inside me, when the two of us were long-distance but one was visiting the other. It wasn't the greatest, the days afterwards... I definitely felt the distance.

So if this is going to work, really, we'll need to move to the same city first I think. And at the very least, Grotto, Lobe and I have to talk about this together, properly. Sensible is a good thing. This is a major life challenge we'd be embarking upon. Despite any confidence or optimism we may have about muddling through, we should be smarter than this. We are smarter than this. C'mon, brain!
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:27 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Default & another update from early Jan

I had a frank conversation with Plinth about my capacity for connection with him these days, i.e. as a friend, with a friendship that could express itself in many ways perhaps, but definitely no expectations for sex. This had been panicking me somewhat, so it was good to get it straight.

I set up a date night with him for soon afterwards. I wanted to get closure to the conversation, to check in that everything was okay. We caught up with a mutual friend for drinks, and had lively conversation and flirty touching at the bar table. Then the two of us walked to the river and watched the fire flares along the river bank, drank wine and talked. I stayed over at his place, and we fell asleep watching a movie. Kisses, cuddles, and cosy bedtime. Mellow.

Sex, especially penetrative sex, does not come easily to me. I mean, fuck, yeah it does, but on the other hand, it doesn't. It isn't a simple thing. For a relationship to be a safe sexual space for me, it can take a lot of work. I need to really feel the connection.

My first few sexual experiences were abusive ones. The first especially so, when I was a child. I've worked through a lot of things, but still, there are trigger points.

Also, I don't seek out casual sex just to get off. Well, I do... Hmm. How to explain.

Yeah, I love sex, I love the release of sex and the joy of sex, but it's an energy I am careful with. If I'm horny, I possibly could call a friend / fuck buddy just to get off, but I'd rather not. The uncertainty of how that would feel, emotionally, makes it too much of a risk sometimes. And in any case, I don't prioritise sex as an activity, very much. Or at least, I'd rather manage it myself (masturbation, fantasies) rather than involve other people in getting sexual release, if that's the only purpose of the connection.

I think it's in part because I've experienced my appetite for sex increasing the more I feed it... It really feels like there's no end to it sometimes. So, if I start getting in the habit of having sex for fun, I fear I'll invade the time I'd rather spend doing other things. Life goals, and such.

The situation is different when sex in a relationship is cultivating the connection, and contributing energy to other things in my life. It's hard to explain well, and I know it sounds a bit heavy on sex. Like sex is only useful when it's in service of other ("higher"?) aims. I don't mean it like that. Sex for sex's sake is like learning for learning's sake. A pleasure, a joy, and not something I would condemn. But I have limited patience for it, personally.

Maybe I need to be more patient. Maybe it's a hangup from my Catholic upbringing. Not sure. I'm open to shifting on this!

But yeah, right now, it's taking a lot of work to establish healthy dynamics between Grotto, Lobe and myself. We have some significant terrain to chart. I had to admit: I don't have the capacity for developing a healthy sexual relationship with Plinth as well.

I felt shit that this could come across as "sorry, Plinth, I have someone in my life I like better than you, I don't have time for us anymore." As if I'm upgrading from him. He said he didn't see it like that at all. He knows I love him and I care about our relationship. Whether or not we have sex doesn't change this.

Interestingly, last night, fucking Grotto, I had moments when I wished Plinth was there too. We've had some hot threesomes. It's funny how I think I'd be able to handle that better than one-on-one sex. Not sure if it would be weird for Plinth, if I made that distinction. Anyway. No doubt I'll find out, if the situation ever presents itself.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:47 AM
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fuchka fuchka is offline
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Default My friends, my friends

So many posts from me today, I wonder what I'm procrastinating from

Actually, I think it's just that I've finally got around to catching up on correspondence, blogging here, and various other scrivenings.

I've been thinking directly about friendship these days. Some thoughts triggered by listening to Theme Time Radio Hour: Friends & Neighbours by Bob Dylan. Do I understand what friendship means? My experience of friendship has been a plethora of looser connections, rather than a few, close friends. I certainly have friendships that run deep, friends I've tethered rafts with through rough waters, but I couldn't point to many that are "best friends". And I don't have a circle of friends as such; most of my friends don't know each other very well.

I try to be open to new people, hospitable to travellers, and be ever conscious of how I might be prejudiced against or deprioritise the needs of someone just because they are unfamiliar to me. This tendency, to have a heart for all, can sometimes stop me from truly appreciating the friendship connections that are precious to me. The friendships I treasure in my life.

I should make time for those friends the way I make time for lovers, because they are like lovers to me. We share a potent intimacy, even if there is no sexual aspect.

The other night, I had a "date" with a close friend, who lives overseas. We chatted online and he said he was making ambrosia. He also said that he'd finally watched a movie I had recommended to him years ago ('The Fall' - which, by the way, is one of the most visually stunning movies I have seen in my life. And I liked the story too.) Anyway. As a reward, I told him that the next movie I watch will be one of his choosing. (He picked 'The Secret in Their Eyes', if you're curious). I also felt inspired to make ambrosia too... So we had parallel ambrosia, and I watched the film he'd picked.

I really think those moments of relating are as important to me, and as important to how I am and how I love, than anything I've written here about sexual partners.
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