Paper or plastic? Side of fries or a side salad? We have a lot of decisions to make on a daily basis. Most of them unimportant, some more pressing. In the context of the Summer of Sexiness, I have been grappling with what I want in the context of singular or plural. More specifically, do I want to date (singular) or do I want to play with others (plural)?
This dilemma has become more immediate since we signed up for a (new to us) dating app especially geared for polyamorous people. Initially, Viktor took the lead in identifying potential matches, focused on finding a guy to bring into our bedroom and has met at least two in person thus far. This has triggered me a bit, since such actions make things more real and tangible and I have had a few moments of (mild) panic. But I am not sure precisely where the fear lies. What am I afraid of?
With this recent emphasis on plural, I have been pushing myself to examine what I want. I also felt that I needed to be take ownership of this process and thus have been active with the app as well, matching with a few singles and couples. Yet nearly each time, I freaked out and clicked “later” instead of “chat now”. I do more easily and calmly respond once the chat has begun.
Frankly, I am confused as to what I want. I think that I am still craving something that I can get from dating that I seem to be missing. Having dated briefly this past summer and fall, I noticed that, with dating, I feel wanted, adored and cared for (when it’s done right, i.e more like Dan than like Hank). I enjoy being the center of attention and there is the newness and discovery; the mystery of getting to know someone one. I want to be pursued. I like that piece of it; being wanted enough for someone to make an effort. That is not to say that Viktor doesn’t make an effort –he truly does and I love him for that, but I hunger for more. However, I do feel guilty for wanting this, because it seems like I should be able to get what I need from Viktor.
Further, in my view, dating is more relationship-centric than threesomes and foursomes. The latter seems to emphasize connection much less. But, given my limited experience in this department, I might be wrong.
Dating also seems less scary in one way because it feels more like a slow dance of getting to know someone while the threesome/foursome approach seems much more focused on sexcapades. Additionally, finding singles for threesomes (or couples for foursomes) on an app feels scary and contrived and I worry that by responding I am promising something – aka sex — and I’m not sure I’m ready for that at the outset.
Part of me wants to feel the cavalier freedom to hop from bed to bed, but the rest of me fears having to deliver, and I worry about being able to relax and surrender with these people who I have never met. Plus, having never used a dating app before, I wonder about the idea of meeting someone online and whether I will feel any chemistry once I actually meet them in person.
Of course, logically I know that I am not signing on any dotted line or promising anything simply by chatting online — or even by agreeing to meet someone, but the anxiety is real. Delving further as I write this, I wonder if there is a fear of being with two men. I obviously trust Viktor, but I won’t know much about this new person. I am not sure if this is my truth or not, but I am trying it on since the idea of being in a threesome with a man and woman seems less threatening (although that could simply be because I’ve been there/done that).
Of course, it doesn’t have to be an Either/Or; it certainly can be an And, but I wonder what it means to want both. Perhaps it just means that I am human 😉
Moreover, as I continue to experiment with the app through chats and, ultimately meet-ups and dates, I am checking in with myself about how I can navigate this in a way that feels safe, sexy and authentic. Stay tuned.