Posts Tagged ‘dating’
This past weekend and some amazing time with Penny (more on that later) has me thinking about trust and femmes. I wrote recently in a dramatical moment, “I just don’t trust femmes anymore” – with immediate caveats and retractions – and I want to expound.
It is femmes that I perhaps trust the deepest. The way I am received – not just cock-and-cunt, not just my fist inside the muscular bowl between your legs, but all of me: when my strong hands weaken and flutter, when I cry, when I laugh too loud, when I give up give in let go, when I feel my power slipping and you put it right back into place with a gentle flick of your wrist.
It is within your embrace that I make the most sense. Callie was the first femme I ever dated, the first relationship where my affections were returned tenfold (before that, I’d loved a femme, my best friend, for years, but that was tragedy. After that, The Ex, who I thought was more femme than she was and that caused constant tension between us).
I know who I am around you. My carefully manufactured, deliberately manifested masculinity suddenly has a purpose, a function, a use, and it excites you, makes you cry out and give in and let go, turns you on. My gestures are held by you, witnessed, caught gently and cradled, and oh my god thank you for that.
This dynamic runs deep in me. Who knows why – nature, nurture, socializing, fetish. I need it, ache for it, me a teenaged pretty-boy (you say), you a powerful goddess. And you must know I never use words like goddess to describe women (too cliché, too overused) but yes that really is what I mean here: magical, strong, miraculous, seductive, creational.
I was made against you. I can think of a couple of you specifically against whom I break and become myself: Callie. DateDyke. Muse. Strong enough to catch me, strong enough to let me sharpen myself against you.
And it is this power that scares me, that now brings these feelings of mistrust. Because I love this dynamic so much, fetishize it even, it touches deep primal nerves in me. I become carried by it and have trusted it – the dynamic – more than I trusted the person. I let her use her femme-ness to get what she wanted, I let her use beauty, seduction, soft skin and flirty submissive eyes. I watched it, I even knew what was going on, and I let it happen anyway.
I know better now, I guess, I hope. I should pay attention to the red flags of constant “conflict,” I shouldn’t have gone to Mexico, I should’ve been more honest, I shouldn’t have fucked her if I didn’t have the aftercare in me.
I’ve said it before – it is one of my greatest flaws: I trust what people tell me. I am convincible.
There really are charms that only femininity, only femmes, only queer femmes who know how to treat sugarbutches like me, possess. Charms that unravel me deeply, that pull me apart. When it’s good, it clears out the cobwebs, shines light into every dark corner, exposes all the cracks and flaws and structures that hold me up, and then, even, fixes them, or attempts to. I am made more whole, more complete. When it’s bad, I have been destroyed foundationally, or attempted to be. Piece by piece picked off and explained in a new way that suited her. My dick in a mason jar under a sink, punished. My every action her fist closed tight around.
It is good I am strong. I come from a strong family who gets along, a queer lineage of kisses, teachers who respected and taught me, who sheltered me and pushed me hard, who said I was worth something, who said we all are, who said stories of marginalized groups and communities must be told, who said I could and should change the world, who said I could do anything, who encouraged me to come alive, who said they liked what I had to say. And I have this place – this personal writing project I refuse to call a “blog” because it is so much more than that, it is revolution, it is community, it is self-awareness and witness and a very lighthouse.
I have built up these tools around me so I don’t fall prey to this problem of trusting femmes. It is because femmes are who I love, who I partner with, for whom I deeply ache that they are capable of such unraveling. If I partnered with butches it would be a problem trusting butches, if I partnered with straight boys or trans women or blondes or tennis players it would be a problem trusting them. And perhaps this is why women as a whole – and femininity – are seen as untrustworthy, sneaky, manipulative in our culture: because men – hetero men – are the ones who partner with this, and men are the ones who have held the pens to write our histories, to write their great love stories, which have involved many broken hearts and many malicious women, because love is scarce and precious and delicate.
Femmes are not untrustworthy. Femmes are who I trust the very most, with whom I make the very most sense, with whom I am more myself than anywhere else.
I am scared, and skeptical, about what it may mean for me to trust, to explore, especially around the specific ways that I can lose my head in this dynamic. It’s new to me, and it affects me deeper than any relationship ever has – I’ve never lost myself so completely in a lover before. So now comes the fusion: the combination of the intense, passionate sexual dynamic that comes with gender play, and the knowledge of relationship tools that I have been collecting and building upon since I began dating fifteen years ago (half my life, now. Amazing). I have the support, the community, the friends, the knowledge, the inner strength.
Bring it on.
Here’s a secret: I’m quite insecure about my ability to go down on a girl.
There are a few clear reasons for this.
The Ex, from the infamous LBD relationship, didn’t get off. I used to go down on her for hours, and … nothing.
Since she & I split nearly two years ago, I’ve been fucking around, and in my efforts to practice safer sex, I’ve only gone down either when we were fluid-bonded (rare), or with protection (also rare, actually).
And I hate to be “That Guy,” but going down on someone with protection just isn’t as fun. It’s hard to be detailed, hard to feel the right pressure or wetness or subtle, small ridges in the delicate tissue, which makes it all the more frustrating.
Going down on a girl, I think, is actually one of the most intimate sex acts. I will do all sorts of things before I’d go down, partially because of the fluid/safer sex issue, and partly because it takes a lot of vulnerability – for both giver and receiver – to have someone so completely focused with her face between your legs, your face between hers.
I also have a tongue piercing, and while I would like to think that it makes me more skilled at things like kissing and going down, but I don’t really have proof of that. sometimes I am paranoid that I don’t really know how to use it, or that really it’s just getting in the way. I’d like to think it enhances what I do with my tongue, but I’m not really sure.
So because of these things, because it’s an intimate act for me, because I’ve been fucking around, because my ex couldn’t get off that way at all, I actually don’t have a lot of practice at it. No one’s ever told me I’m actually bad at it, don’t get me wrong – and once I know how to get a girl off, I can usually reproduce it in various ways: fingers, cock. It should extend to tongue, too, right?
But I’m insecure about it.
(I actually picked up Tristan Taormino’s DVD Guide to Cunnilingus at her launch party for her book Opening Up, but haven’t watched it yet. I should do that.)
So, on Sunday – after a lovely date with Penny on Saturday night where we watched the Sex and the City film, had dinner, drinks, dessert after, went to my place and kept each other up until 3am – we were lounging, satiated from a morning of breakfast and sex, talking about her plans to move to San Francisco.
Penny was lying tucked under my arm on the couch, and asked, “What’s on your mind?”
“Going down on you,” I said. I felt her body pulse in response.
We talked. Safer sex, my history, hers, why I don’t go down, that I wanted to with her. This conversation, inevitably, led to kissing, my mouth on her neck, clavicle, nipples, which was suddenly such a heightened sensation because we were both so aware of the idea of her clit in my mouth.
Pushing her into the bedroom, I stripped her bare swiftly, laid her out on the bed. She wrapped her arms around my neck and pulled me to her in the sweetest gesture of vulnerability and desire; it was one of the strongest moments of the weekend.
“I want to taste you,” I murmured into the skin of her neck and cheek. “I want your clit in my mouth. I want to get you all wet, then fuck you, get my cock out and slide it in deep …”
(This was actually my backup plan in case I couldn’t get her off with my mouth. I had no idea if it would be easy or hard, if I was any good at it, if I could get her off this way at all. But at least I’m pretty good at getting her off with my fingers on her clit while fucking her, now, so that was the backup.)
Her back arched in response, pressing against me. Mouth opened, breath thick.
“You’re going to have to wait.” I said, pulling myself up and hovering over her. “Just for a minute, so I can get up and put my cock on.” She nodded, a tiny gesture, eyes wide and liquid and full, a look I see rarely on her. So sexy.
I rinsed my cock, fast, still sticky from fucking her that morning, and strapped on. She pulled me to her again, eager, kissing me open-mouthed and supple in a way that made me melt.
Softly, I slid my fingers inside her. Maneuvered down her body to touch my tongue to her clit. Light and soft with a wide tongue. I hadn’t had that close of a view of her cunt before, and she was beautiful.
She moaned. Whispered, “oh baby,” and I kept going. Looped my arm under her thigh and brought my hand to her pubic bone, pulled her cunt open with my fingers from above, leaving two fingers of my right hand inside, gently curled, light pressure and thrusting but not heavy. Just a little, just so she could feel it, just so she could feel stretched and full.
Her clit strained in my mouth, so clearly, so subtly but I could feel it, and I hardened my tongue and began moving it back and forth quicker. Pursed my lips around it to push the flesh away and let my tongue touch that one spot, that tiny spot, pulling back the hood and balancing her every nerve on the tip of my tongue.
Nude and strapped on, legs half-on and half-off the bed, I attempted not to let my hips shake and thrust involuntarily, but once she started pressing against my hand and mouth in rhythm I just couldn’t help it, my body responded accordingly. I wanted inside her, I wanted to fuck her, hard.
Of course, I didn’t move. Kept my mouth just where it was.
She tightened on my fingers and I pushed my fingers faster, a little fuller. Steady and thick with pressure against her gspot, pubic bone, the underside of her clit, I could feel it between my fingers – inside – and tongue.
And she came. Shuddering, gasping. Quickly, in fact. Sooner than I’d expected, thighs shaking, then her fingers around my wrist of the hand that was inside her and I pulled out slow. She pulled me up to her breast, pulled me to her.
I didn’t want to stop, not yet. I wanted her over and again, and again.
She laughed that little laugh that sounds like joy, the one that echoes in my mind after she’s gone. “I didn’t like that.” All sarcasm.
I laughed too. “I didn’t think so. Well good, because I didn’t like doing it.”
“I’m like a teenage boy,” she said, eyes open, skin bare, feeling exposed, referring to how fast she came. I pulled a soft throw blanket over us.
I kissed her again, soft, deep, she was so supple in that way that only a long day of sex makes you, and I could’ve done anything, for hours, could’ve done whatever she wanted, felt a superhero strength, an inexhaustive dominance that could’ve gone on and on.
Then there was my mouth back on her skin and neck and soon my hand back between her legs, the eager way she parts. Between her legs I gathered lube for my cock, but she was sore, a little hesitant when I slid inside her.
So I brought my mouth to her again instead. Slight tongueful of lube in the beginning, but I didn’t care. I caught her clit between my tongue piercing and the tip of my tongue and flicked it, kept it taut.
After a minute, I nearly panicked. What if I couldn’t get her off again? What if that first time was just a fluke, what if she was already bored? What if I actually wasn’t any good at this? What if I was being cocky thinking I would do it again, just like that?
And then I heard her moan again, baby, ohhh baby, which she rarely says, rarely calls me, and I worked my fingers inside her again, not too much but a little pressure, gently, sweet, tongue hard against the soft folds of her, eager, lapping, the ball of my tongue piercing tracing her hood, sucking her into my mouth.
And she came again. Pelvis and spine rolling on the bed, thrusting against me, thighs clenching around me and shaking, stomach contracting. I wished I could see her from far away, all of her, observe, watch the way her body builds and releases.
I wrapped myself around her again, kissing her, fingertips feather-light along her body, bare skin flushed and heated.
“I’m going to have to practice that some more, I think,” I said. She laughed and sighed, rolled to her side as I pressed against her back, cradling, and she pulled my arm around her, held it against her chest.
… that Sinclair is single again, and dating. Spring is hovering just around the corner, and New York as a whole can feel it. The girls are already pulling out their swishy skirts, bouncy hair, strappy sandals. I notice. Man, do I notice. I try not to stare.
All that cliche shit is true about spring – fertility, rebirth, lust. The newness of those baby-green leaves are raw and luscious enough that sometimes I just want to bite them right off the tree. Destroy them with my mouth. Mmm.
At the last minute, I’m going to the Body Electric workshop that starts tomorrow (in fact, I need to leave in about four hours). I have some very particular intentions going into it, especially about the things that I’m holding on to. I want to let go. Leave it all be. Wipe the slate clean. (Et cetera, et cetera, ad infinitum.) I want to decline politely to the world’s human messes, to learn to say ‘no, thank you.’
My other intention is to bring the masculine butch boyishness again. It was a huge revelation for me last time, especially in a womyn-goddess-yoni kind of sacred sexuality space. But I learned so much. I need to take that with me again.
This is brief, I know; unfortunately, my schedule is only looking to be more packed in the near future. I will do my best to keep updating. Meanwhile, got any more butch eye candy to send me? I’m nearly out. C’mon, you/your girlfriend/your wife/your best friend/your lover/your favorite crush wants to be some Sugarbutch eye candy, I know you do.
Regular Sugarbutch writings will resume on Monday.
I’m trying this dating thing again, and I’ve answered a couple of personal ads on Craigslist in the last few weeks. No dates so far – seems the flirtation dies out pretty quickly, and frankly, I could pursue it, but I’m not willing to do all the work. Some, yes, but you’ve got to make it worth my while, you’ve got to pique my interest. I’m definitely more picky than I used to be, and I’m not so willing to compromise – hell, I’m not quite even sure I’m ready to date, I’m still dizzy from the ending of that last relationship with DD. I’m not in a hurry, but I am getting just a wee bit anxious to get laid.
Meanwhile, we’ve coined some new terms: DND, definitely not dating; email chemistry, for what kind of feeling you get from someone via writing; small-r vs big-R relationship.
I’ve noticed a few patterns in this dating adventure. Here’s some things that keep coming up for me. Got any tips for me, or for others? What have you learned by dating on the internet? Lay it on me, I can use all the help I can get.
- When placing an ad, make sure you have time in the next two weeks or so to go on follow-up dates. Clear your date nights – Friday and Saturday – or, if you can’t do that (if you work those nights, for example), have a few other options open, brunch on the weekends, or typical happy hour time for those who may be doing that 9-to-5 office thing. You don’t have to go out with everybody who answers, of course, but you want to be able to pick two or three of the good responses and be available to actually meet in the near future.
- When sending photos of yourself:
a) ask your friends to help you pick out the shots that actually look like you, even if they aren’t what you consider to be your most flattering photo;
b) include a shot of your face and a shot of your body;
c) do not include photos of you with your ex. Have your friends take new shots of you if those are the only ones you have;
d) resize your photos to somewhere around 600px by 400px. Attaching huge, giant photos directly from the camera is very inconvenient for the recipient, and are hard to see.
- Your social networking site is also a personal ad. Send on your Myspace/Friendster/Facebook site upon sending your name or your photograph (your potential date will probably Google you anyway). If you use your Myspace profile for something else (keeping an eye on your kids, connecting with your high school students) make a profile that just highlights you, where you can actually write things. No need to be smutty and intimate and TMI, just have it be an authentic representation of you. This profile should be PUBLIC, with some photos that you haven’t already sent onto your prospective date, because why else would we be looking at your profile? To gauge whether or not you are physically interesting & attractive. That doesn’t necessarily mean “conventionally beautiful” – it means, whether or not I’m intreagued by the way you look. If you need to keep this private, for whatever reason, then after your prospective date sends you a request to be added, please follow up on that quickly.
- When you set a tone in your personal ad, it’s best to follow up with that tone too. You created a persona for yourself in your ad, if you can’t follow through with it, best to put up a persona that you can follow through with. Sounds cheesy to say “be authentic,” but, come on. Be authentic, even if that authenticity is NSA dating & sex. That’s authentic too.
Four full days, four nights.
I don’t even know where to begin. There was wandering around the Village, visiting The Leatherman and New York pizza and a very successful trip to DSW for shoes – I found brown leather Steve Madden loafers, she bought ruby slippers, these incredible wine-red heels. There were noodles at Republic, coffee & bagel breakfasts in Park Slope, dancing at the dyke club Cattyshack (and a little too much whiskey for me, which only made it easier for her to fuck me on my kitchen floor after), burlesque at the Shanghai Mermaid where we stepped into 1920s Paris, which featured the house Tin Pan Blues Band. There was an unsuccessful dance at Stepping Out Studios and then the subsequent making up for it at Therapy, where, yes, we did get busted having sex in the bathroom.
There was sex and fucking and making love and play and rope and my flogger even came down off the wall for a while.
There was sitting in a coffee shop, writing across the table from her. There were late night conversations on pillows and morning light over her face and showers and walks and drinking and stories on the subway and kissing her. Holding her hand.
It was hard to stay present, hard not to be sad that she was leaving, that this was temporary, but I wanted to squeeze everything out of it that possibly could. Since she left, I feel numb. I took a deep breath, started focusing on my 200-item to-do-list and couldn’t focus on anything, not even a TV show.
I held it together until I peeled back the covers to find the baby-blue babydoll nightie she’d been wearing all weekend, sheer, barely covering her ass, so beautiful, and it smelled like her skin of course, and my fingers had been holding her body inside of it for days, and then suddenly it was just fabric, empty, and I welled up with the loss.
I know – we both know – better than to cultivate such intensity so early on in a relationship. We’re both passionate, intense, emotional – makes for romance and fascination, I’m sure, but we are wary of the distance between us, we discussed this; angry that we cannot properly date, slowly, excitedly, and instead we’re doing this hurricane long distance thing.
I don’t know what we’re going to do. All I know is, the next step is that she’s working from Puerta Vallarta in February, and I’m going to visit her at the villa she’s rented (just happens to be over Valentine’s Day). Twenty-two days, then, until I get to see her again.
I can make it until then.
One step at a time.
In retrospect, it seems so obvious. Of course it’s hard to date while you’re falling for someone else. Of course you should work on that new relationship, get it to a stable place, before dating around, otherwise the foundation will probably be too shaky.
In making that other date, I think I was attempting to not acknowledge how much I’ve already fallen, how much I want to keep falling, how much she matters already. “Nah, it’s just a casual thing,” I was telling myself. “I should keep dating, keep seeing other people, this can’t really work, what can we do.”
“Nothing.” My friend, the Musician, said to me. “It’s impossible. There is no possible way for it to work. Except when it does.” The Musician and her girlfriend spent fifteen months at the beginning of their relationship apart, in different states and then in different countries. And somehow, they made it happen. She & I are probably the most romantic people I know, kings of the big gestures in love.
The people around me are laughing when I tell them my predicament. I kind of want them to say, this can’t work, just give up now, forget it, get real, but they don’t. They get it, like the Musician. Cody‘s girlfriend is also long distance, and about to move to his city to be with him. Dylan is beginning to practice dating more than one person at once (is that public knowledge? I can edit this out if you don’t want me to say that). Molly, my fluffer femme spy, reminds me that she is also an IT department of polyamory. And I haven’t even started tapping the resources of Eileen & Maymay & Rona and other sexbloggers who date multiple people and still manage to love and commit.
Y’all are seriously rooting for us, aren’tcha? It’s kind of strange to feel so supported in this. Maybe you’re sick of the smutty Sugarbutch gallavanting? Or perhaps you’re mirroring my own enthusiasm? Maybe you’ve been following my heartbreak and loss and know how happy I was when I was in love, and just want to see me happy again? Perhaps some of you still believe that One True Love thing and want to see me settled and happy.
Sugarbutch will die when you’re all in love and monogamous, you know that, right? more than a few friends have said this to me. But I don’t think it will die – I still want to write smut. Perhaps it’ll be less dating, but there better well still be sex in my life.
“It just keeps working, until it doesn’t work,” The Musician said. It’s like that quote from Death, part of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series, where she comes for a little baby and the baby says, “That’s it? That’s all I get?” and Death responds, “You get what everyone gets. You get a lifetime.”
I like a lifetime as a unit of measure. Same with a relationship. That’s what we get, DD & I … how long we can make it work, and how we’ll make it work, is definitely still To Be Figured Out.
“Will the grand gestures be worth it?” The Musician asks. “Who knows? I won’t know if all these huge gestures, flying across the country for my girlfriend, were worth it, until I’m on my deathbed saying, ‘holy shit, I’m dying, and you’re still here.’”
“Yeah, you’re right. And at the same time, I don’t regret the grand gestures in the relationships I had that have ended. And as much as I’m sad about the endings, or unhappy with how things ended, I don’t regret giving everything I could give, in them, at the time.”
“You’re such a romantic.”
“Yeah. But at the same time, what would I do if she was here? Is it only safe because she’s far away? Would things be totally different? Would I run?”
When I stop to think about it, I’m terrified. Second-guessing myself and my feelings, uncertain, unconvinced, unclear. I still feel so messed up from the two major breakups in my recent past, so particularly fucked by the manipulations of the unholy bitch that I have been trying to unlearn and unbelieve about myself. Somewhere in there I still don’t believe I’d be any good for someone in this state of flux. Too many unknown variables, too much changing.
But, on the other hand, I am closer to being who I want to become than I’ve ever been, and that is saying something. I’m refining, distilling, settling into a version of myself that is sustainable, solid but flexible, just good.
“Are you kidding!” The Musician says. “We’re alike, you & me. You squeeze your heart out in every direction you can find. You want her. You aren’t poly. You want the big love. You want to fall. And clearly, you want to fall for her.”
I still don’t have any idea how to make this work, but I think it’s beginning to sink in, a little deeper, to those inner layers, and clearly I have some new, revised choices to make.