Authentic Intimacy — a long ad hoc essay thereupon

I’ve decided my frustrations over not having whatever sex life I thought I wanted arose from not understanding at all what I wanted. Something like this is never news. But it’s taken me a long time anyway because I’ve led a remarkably slow sex life. By this I mean that while we as a couple have been ethically non-monogamous for five years, I haven’t had a seriously engaging alternate partner since I stopped seeing the one who helped me open that door several years ago, and my partner hasn’t even had sex with anyone else, bar one, for an entire year. We’ve quite slowed down.

I think I understand why, though, and it does not mean that we are simply evolving into monogamy. That will probably happen eventually. But it won’t happen anytime soon. Instead we are blessed to have a relationship within which we can explore and learn ourselves, and while this has meant changes that have led to near-monogamy, it also means changes that will, at its proper time, mean something else.

There was a long time when our openness was very difficult for me. I didn’t know if I was wrestling with latent jealousies or insecurities or my own inability to compete or what. She in turn was not really having all that great a time. I now understand what we both were doing. She was subconsciously exploring from various angles the dynamic between predator and prey because it was the only way to deal with her youth and childhood. I on the other hand have never been comfortable with that dynamic and found myself fighting against my own tendency to judgment and anger when seeing her play in that field. She also had relationships that didn’t bother me at all, and in time I realized that those were the ones that did not involve the predator-prey dynamic. They were simply close friendships. They were, in fact, the one thing that I know I crave myself: relationships of authentic intimacy.

Some of my own attempts to play around felt like failures at some level because there was often some sort of doubt that I refused to acknowledge, a doubt that this was a good place for me. Matters were made worse, which is to say un-ignorable, when this doubt lurking in my subconscious prevented my body responding as I wanted it to. This was very frustrating. Especially so when I knew the men with my lady were not having this problem. They did not have or care about those doubts. Did my sensitivity make me less of a man? Was I attempting the wrong lifestyle? Was I just getting old? Questions like that tried to knock on my psychic door and I didn’t know what to do besides ignore them.

I tried to foster various attitudes within myself but my social abilities were not up to making this a very swift set of experiments. And then she had some sort of epiphany and made a left turn into a much quieter lifestyle. Since then we’ve been de facto monogamous; but we both know it’s a passing phase.

Authenticity is what I must now insist upon for and from myself. This means that whoever it is I am inching closer to, I have to really like her and want to spend time with her. I have to have no agenda or goal or specific intention beyond getting to know her and allowing the energy to flow where it will. She too must have the same attitude. Just as I don’t like predatory men, I don’t like predatory women, and there are plenty of them. This also means, it should go without saying, that one-night stands and first-date sex are right out. To not know the person inside the skin makes playing with the skin rather pointless.

Now I’m all a-dither because I’ve found someone who’s not only very clear mentally and spiritually but likes me a lot and is also inCREDibly sexy. She’s moving very slowly, she has to because of her situation, and that suits me too. In fact I think another one of my criteria would be that a person has to have very little time for me, because I will have very little time for her, and we must have balance. So we’ve got that going for us too, and it might be months (years?) before we fully explore this thing.

I’m not really a-dither. That implies I’m distracted from my one true love and I am not. Instead I live in a very pleasant space where love is radiating towards me from more than one direction; and in every case (yes, there are actually more than two, if I could somehow make the time and if the potentiality of our sex lives isn’t just a fantasy I’m indulging in because I can’t make the time to test it) the women in question also happen to be highly attractive. Attractive is relative and is less relevant the more authentic the intimacy, but the fact of it makes me happy anyway. Who knows, I may in some future rumination realize that their beauty had actually been the point of it all. But this is no time to be THAT analytical.