So we don't really have a word for what we "are." I don't like dating, so I'm not dating her. She doesn't like the idea of a long-term relationship so we're not doing that either. Do we need an easy handle on what we are forming between us? No. Is it more convenient if you are able to say, my boyfriend and my girlfriend? Maybe a tad better than my lover, or my life-mate. But please, we're splitting hairs. Do we like to be together? Yes. Are there things we like to do together besides fool around in bed? Yes. Then do that. Do all of that.
I'm a bit closer to my ex-wife now, having seen a glimpse into her life. I know we're both doing the best we can. And Boyhood celebrates that triumph both alone and together.
I hope you meet a lot of nice people out there. But don't be fooled by their looks, their profile statements, or their fluent email banter. Go for the face-to-face meeting with as little hassle and energy as possible. If it becomes difficult to land the date, for whatever reason, move on. If they wanted to meet they would also be trying to make it happen, not giving excuses.
I believe in order to find our lover we need a fairly clear picture of what they might be. Way beyond looks, the construction or destruction happens over the course of the initial weeks of "dating." What forms beyond the initial chemistry is what will remain beyond the heat of the sexual newness.
During my failing marriage, I got very good at listening for the sirens of destruction (I had done something wrong) and looking for an escape or some heroic journey to fix the problem. Both in my marriage and in this relationship, that was not the right approach.
So what do you do with a relationship between men and women when the request for sex is constant and unrelenting? Well, of course, the man needs to figure out a way to pleasure himself, or he's going to be frustrated a lot of the time. And it's really not the woman's responsibility, even in a marriage, to pleasure us.
I am learning better how to tap into the power of feelings and how they can motivate me towards doing better, being better. But I'm also too aware of how my feelings can lead me down dark and lonely paths. I am constantly trying to find the balanced walk down the middle.
My self-acceptance is not quite what I would call self-love, but I really appreciate the term self-care. And by caring for myself I am showing love for parts of myself I have always tried to hide.