The Badoo interests came and went. Sometimes I met them, sometimes we chatted and that was it. The drop out rate was disappointing. I stopped bothering to log them in the end. But my first, the one who I never met, was the one that stuck around. Gianluca. We bantered regularly and once we had sorted out our differences over the direction of our relationship – ie that I was never exclusive – the game continued.
We pondered regularly on meeting up. It came up in conversation often – he always broached the subject. I was casual about it. ‘Maybe’ I would say. Then I would tease him that he couldn’t handle me. He liked the banter but always said he was a gentleman for all his bravado and insistence and his dirty talk. I believed him. For all his naughtiness, I had him sussed better than he thought. We worked on a different level. I thought so anyway. I thought that one day we would meet but I was going to let him do the chasing. I was playing it cool.
He had been abroad a week. He messaged me on his return and I regailed him with the stories of my dates good and bad. He admitted to me he had a girl coming over for the weekend. He’d cracked. He was back ‘hook up dating’ again. A little bit of me was pained. I was no longer the centre of attention. But I fought it back. I had no claim on him. And who was I to talk!
He decided that we would meet. We half heartedly set a date before Christmas which had to be confirmed. But it was a regular subject every time we had a conversation. It was fixed in his mind. I liked the flirting and the possibility but a part of me didn’t want to meet him. What if everything changed? We had overstepped the boundaries before and it hadn’t been so great, we’d withdrawn and restarted several times. But we just couldn’t say goodbye to each other. But what if he got what he wanted and then got bored? What if I got what I wanted and got bored? What if I met him and didn’t like him as much as I thought? What if he had another guilt trip about his wife and it all came back and smacked me in the face again. It was why having other interests was so important for me. I didn’t feel the same way about Gianluca now, but he was still quite a big part of my life and our connection was very real.
I wanted him as a friend if nothing else. I liked him as a person. I didn’t want to lose that. I wanted a regular situation with him that was long term. But the distance between us, and our busy schedules, would keep things fresh and that was probably going to be the key to our relationship. Gianluca said he thought I was different, that he wouldn’t get bored of me. I told him I wouldn’t let him have everything. The only way to keep him coming back was to drip feed the experience to him. And yes he liked that too. He loved the chase more than the conquest.
I didn’t want one night stands, I wanted people I could have long term arrangements with, people who I could be familiar with and feel safe with. I wanted connections, attraction. It didn’t need to be in love (that only complicates the situation and makes you vulnerable) but you have to fancy someone. I wanted to be familiar enough with someone that we could push each others buttons and feel comfortable and know each other, but within the confines of limitation. This was a sensible set up.
Of course people would come and go. Nothing ever stays the same and it pays to keep playing the field. There was no shortage of prospective possible suitors that’s for sure. I was deleting more approaches than I answered. A year and a half of noone taking the slightest bit of interest in me and suddenly I was fighting them off. The ego trip was massive. I’m not sure what that says about me. Maybe that was the addiction? Maybe it just means I don’t move enough socially to meet people. Maybe the people I need to meet are just on the internet. Maybe I just seem unapproachable in real life. Whatever the answer, I was having no trouble finding people now. It was the perfect medium and I was happy to run with it.