Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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Misunderstandings…

…And the power of communication.

I was really feeling quite despondent last night. I thought BG was being negative, handing me a shopping list of things to check/things that were wrong regarding the new building lease.

We managed a really good talk this morning. He did back off last night, seeing my face fall. I know I have to do due diligence yet. Was just excited at this good possibility. He’d had a late afternoon flurry of demands from staff, just the usual problems, but in a barrage. All at once.

I could see him pacing around the club when I arrived, looking most agitated. And he was stressed about a function we had to attend as sponsors…so I went over to be with him, all high with fear and excitement, expecting to be lavished with praise, support and love. Getting instead, don’t pay for that, check this term, what about….??? was a big letdown.

I went to bed before him. He stayed up watching sport, when I needed a cuddle. But was not going to be needy girl.

He snored and fought some huge verbal battles during the night, and I shifted to the couch. He woke up all concerned. I had pretty much convinced myself that I needed to end things with him. He sat naked with me, asking if I was okay.

I said, “I’m really worried about us.”

“Why? What have I done? I’m sorry.”

I struggled to get the words out. But gently explained that I felt pretty concerned that he was riding roughshod all over my accomplishments, and I’d been here before, and it felt unhealthy. He said, “I know. I’m sorry. I messed up. I realised it, and tried to back pedal but it was too late. Please don’t paint me with the same brush as him. I do care. I am proud of you. I was in a bad headspace, and didn’t realise you came to celebrate. I’m a dick and I apologise.”

I replied that I know he isn’t Roger, but my guard is up waaaay high about this stuff. Some green flags seemed to be turning red!

And he admitted for the first time to a small amount of disappointment/resentment that I am opening this business alone. We had talked about joint ventures…I asked him about his feelings before I signed up. He was positive and encouraging. And he owns his lack of commitment to doing anything new. His fear of failure is a big driving force with him. I worked that out a few years ago. I felt if I waited for him, we’d still be waiting.

Anyway, long, good, real conversation. Which inevitably turned to sex. He always worries he’s going to lose me over this. I just homestly told him, if everything else is good, I can manage. But it does mean when we are struggling, the thoughts about my higher drive always ramp up.

Ultimately, he talked again about how unhealthy his relationship with sex is. It was a thing you did, working in hospitality, after a few drinks, and a stupid gane of pursuit. It isn’t a deeply intimate thing for him. He shows intimacy in other physical ways. I know this. I know that I’m “too good/nice” to fuck good and hard, or even seduce slowly, devouring each other. He’s never equated sex with love. It’s been Wham! Bam! Thank you Ma’am. Loads of one night stands and drunken hook-ups. No need to learn skills, understand where all the buttons on the console are, just a lot of point and shoot! Lol.

I’m the opposite. Probably demi-sexual. I need love to feel deeply sensual and wantonly sexy. And the closer I feel to you, the hornier I get.

It’s a giant challenge!

But. This was an exceptional talk. We discussed mental health, sex, hopes, dreams, expectations, what does supportive look like/feel like. I told him how hard I am finding it to talk candidly with him. Not because of him, but because I am struggling to identify and name my feelings sometimes. And top of my list is always that I don’t ever want to hurt him.

He did have one frustrated moment where he said about my past, “sometimes I feel from all of this unsaid stuff, the way you go quiet and withdraw, that you are never going to get over him.”

That took my breath away (what little I have, with this pneumonia!) My first instinct was to defend myself. Shout, no! That’s not true!

Instead. I shut my mouth. After a few minutes, I said, “there’s some truth there. I don’t think you do ever “get over” this stuff. But I know he’s not who I loved, and I also know I love you. It has left deep, painful scars. Sometimes the trauma is briefly visible, I’m sorry, I try to tuck it away quickly, out of view.” And I liked his reply.

“Yes babe. I see those moments. When you withdraw. And I’m sorry you have that. I also know my own damage. I just bluff my way through that, and yours is more painful. It silences you. Like sharp pain makes you suck in your breath. I hate when I feel like I triggered it by doing something wrong.”

Oh fuck. He he gets it. Because he’s felt it. He told me he gets really anxious about this stuff, because Chrissy said she loved him all the time, and then she was gone. No discussion. No warning. No honesty. He’s scared I will lie to him, too.

I tell you, trying to do this in your 50s is fucking insane!

So much baggage.

But, I do like how open he is to me. He’ll answer anything. He tells me the warts and all stuff of his past. He’s kind, caring and loving about my crap. He wants to make this work, and he knows that takes effort, it doesn’t just happen.

And, bonus. Great sex after all of that! Initiated cautiously by him. But strongly encouraged by me! See? Connection makes it BETTER! 😜

I’ve done a pile of homework. Opening a new business bank account. Downloading manuals and checklists. Filling in what I can in spreadsheets. The sun is finally out. The dogs are on the furniture, in the sun.

Whaaaat? Get off the ottoman, big dog! I am curled up, about to have a nap. Tomorrow it is revised budgets and business plan. Making a bank appointment. Writing my resignation letter…

BG just phoned. A bit upset. He was planning on coming over. Instead, at my insistence, he rang Andy, one of his best mates. He’d called earlier in the week and BG was a bit busy. Glad he called him. Turns out, his business is in trouble. He’s downsizing, restructuring. It means they will have to sell their stunning home and land up the coast with the elevated, 180° views. When he called, he and his wife were over in the nearby town, looking at smaller houses. He was asking if I’d mind if he went to Andy’s. Lol. Mind? Bloody hell mate. Get your arse up to your friend’s place! Beer and mate therapy required!

More Nana napping for me. Time to chill, rest, try to recover.


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Together?

BG is making much louder noises about moving in with me.

We have been talking about this for a while. We can both see the benefits of our distance relationship. It’s stink being apart, but it also means we are very independent, and seeing each other mostly at weekends, is a treat we really look forward to.

There is a lot of evidence that women are freed by being single. That men benefit more from heteronormative marriage than women.

This post about women’s sacrifice in marriage, for example.

We STILL take on the bulk of the domestic load, and lose career ground in raising children. I worked fulltime farming, but still did all the parenting and domestic admin, business books, and logistics as well. Rog had hunting, fishing, racing, gun club, etc, etc, etc. I had kid stuff. PTA, kindy committee, ag day, blah, blah, blah. Stuff for others. Not for me. I yearned for the freedom to do what I wanted! It was coming. The kids were starting to flap their wings!

And the reality is, I am more established, with a home and property, investments and a new business here than BG. He has the higher salaried job. He has never even asked me to move to him. I have considered it though. Selling up and moving to one of our most beautiful coastlines, how awful, right??? I looked at employment and business opportunities.

But, practicality.

Older couples have different challenges and expectations when getting together, than we did when we were younger. Having that contracting out agreement is super important.

I notice things like how he tends to take over the TV viewing. We’re not together often, and I watch far more eclectic stuff. His preferences for golf, motor sport, reality TV. Yawn. I just switch off and read. But if we lived together, I would assert my taste more.

I love my home, and have spent a lot of time, effort and money getting it to be the haven I never had, living in what were essentially Roger’s homes.

I see it clearly now. I never once really got to choose. I got the houses that came with the farms Roger (“we,” lol) bought and sold. There was never any budget to do much to the houses. We did cheap bathroom renos in two. But never new carpet, or anything like that. We were pretty cash strapped, always.

Time magazine’s earlier linked article, about older couples maintaining separate homes, separate finances. It just makes a huge amount of sense to me.

“Financial planner Maryan Jaross, 68, of Louisville, Colo., for example, built a successful career post-divorce and with it, her “independence and autonomy,” she says. “I sure as hell didn’t want to give it up. I can buy a pair of shoes even if I have a hundred pairs.” She lives happily with Tom Lepak, 65, who works in sales for an industrial construction firm. For this and other reasons, she’s built a legal wall between their finances.

There are many women like Jaross, economically independent, able and determined to have equal relationships. She loves to cook, but Lepak does the clean-up and laundry. He makes the bed and does the yard work, which he enjoys. They hire people to do what neither wants to do. “That we don’t have kids under foot and obligations is huge,” she says. “Being a couple is a different mindset now.” “

So, last night, watching some TV after a very successful day at the races and a quick dinner and bottle of wine on our way home, BG was reclining on my very dainty, mid century replica couch.

My lounge room is a quirky layout. I deliberately put the TV in the wee nook, around the corner from my fireplace. You can’t see it at all, until you face the entry door to the room. I didn’t want the TV as a focal point! I wasn’t even going to have a television when I arrived here, didn’t buy it until I had lived here about 5 or 6 months. So, the wee space – which I assume was once a covered in sun porch – required dainty furniture.

The lounge room itself has large, mid century, comfy sofa, huge, long ottoman and comfy armchair.

BG has gently complained about the feminine size of my “TV couch” before. It works just fine for single me. But, he’s a large man, and it isn’t super comfortable for just blobbing out on for him.

His question last night was fairly guarded. We were sitting quietly. He asked, “um, what is the disputes resolution process?”

I was caught a bit off guard. After a minute, “oh, for us, you mean. When we disagree?”

“Yeah.”

Then it clicked. He was uncomfortable on my dinky little designer couch.

“You can shift the big couch here.”

And we both realised, this is my home. I’m fairly particular. I’ve made it my very beautiful space. I keep my towels just so on their racks. I treat the shower glass. The bathrooms are pristine. I have gorgeous objets d’art in place. I am neat and tidy, and take pride in my furniture and decor.

Yeah.

Him moving here is quite challenging. It will also be his space. But I chose it. I decorated it. It’s my first place that is mine!

Eeek. Compromise. I just said, “communication. Honesty. Fairness. Really listening. What is non negotiable. You need to be clear if you are unhappy with my control freak over my home, and we’ll find a way, okay?”

Damn! Knew I wanted to be single forever, lol.


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Crying

BG started crying this morning.

Seemingly out of nowhere.

It’s the first time I’ve seen him cry. He puts up a happy front. Strong. In control. Fun. All that jazz.

I just snuggled in and held him. I could see he was embarrassed to start with. Fighting the tears, turning away. As I held him, kissed his face, and whispered, “I’m here. It’s okay,” he relaxed a bit, and eventually smiled at me through the tears.

“You okay? Wanna talk?” He shook his head, saying, “nah, it’s definitely not you. Sorry, that was weird.”

I said that he’s carrying a lot.

He kissed me and said, “it’s not that. I’m dealing with that, it’s what I do. It doesn’t weigh on me like you think it does.”

Then, after a pause, I replied, “everything else is fine, darling. If it’s your past, that’s okay. I’m not her. I’m happy. Don’t stress. I just hope I’m ‘enough.'” He squeezed me hard, “too much, babe, certainly more than enough!”

I know he worries that he isn’t keeping up with me, sexually. I know he wanted to make love this morning, and normally I’m all over that! But I thought, I’ll just let him see how much he wants me. And I knew there wasn’t really time. He had a flight to catch. So, my unusually passive state must have upset him a bit. He knew I was wanting him. But I didn’t pursue it. I think he was feeling he’d let me down.

He is worried about living together. It’s coming from him, that we’re moving towards this. He is seriously considering resigning after the end of the financial year. He was disappointed that due to Covid restrictions, next month’s national conference (in Roger’s city 😱) was cancelled. He was planning on networking and researching as to whether his planned consultancy business would be a flyer. But he’s scared. He hasn’t lasted more than two years, living with a woman. The others – those that weren’t Chrissy – didn’t really matter. I mean, it’s never nice when a relationship ends. But Chrissy was his only real love. He desperately wanted it to work. And has it in his head that it was about sex. Not enough sex. I know he worries that I want a lot more sex than he does.

That I will do a Chrissy. Replace him. Lie. Cheat. Bugger off.

He doesn’t tell me he loves me first. I think it’s fear. Walls. Holding himself back.

This morning he told me he loves me, and never felt this way about anyone before. That the love has grown, keeps increasing the longer we’ve known each other, and I’m easily the most supportive, positive person he’s been with.

I promised him it isn’t a deal breaker for me. I’d far rather have someone kind, supportive, funny, and I love our snuggles. Absolutely love that he touches me constantly. Hoped it didn’t make me seem needy.

BG looked at me, stroking my hair, and said, “Beautiful, I wanna snuggle you all the time. It’s the best, but it can’t be enough. You deserve someone who wants to ravage you constantly!”

Hmmm. I had that. Look how that turned out, right?

I think I’ll take a bit of longing, over the highly sexually charged passion, that was never about me.


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The simple ahhhs

I’m having a rough week. Struggling as badly as I have in quite some time.

It irks me. That this still happens. It makes me feel weak, unhealing, and yeah, stupid.

I know I am none of those things, but the lowered self esteem and self flagellation and doubt are exhausting.

Then, the man who rarely says much other than that he is happy, sent me a quick message that felt a lot deeper than normal. He’s had a sore tooth for weeks. Two patch up jobs from the dentist, tomorrow he’s getting a root canal, so probably just feeling sorry for himself! But he said “I don’t know how or why I got so lucky to meet you xxx.”

For no reason. I didn’t DO anything. SAY anything. I just exist.

And I realised I still tie my value to what I DO for others. Never just, I’m Paula, and I’m pretty cool.

We are kind to each other. Supportive. We have fun. But I admit, I’m overthinking things a lot lately! He is working towards moving to be with me, in the next 6-12 months. I think it’s good. But panic a bit. There is a big sexual compatibility issue. That is a problem. Not an enormous one. But it might one day feel bigger?

I like being in charge of my own life. Completely. I’m concerned about how the hell you live with someone, financially independent from, and yet combined with, another. I have good advisors, but I’m making a very large financial commitment in starting this business, I want it to be mine. He wants to help. He’s excited. And I worry he will feel left out.

I mean, I own four properties, that I bought all by myself, but this is bigger than most of them, and pretty much the end of the nest egg. It has to work! It will, but it’s never plain sailing. And he wants to help…

We’ve talked about it, and he gets it, but it’s hard to actually sort it all out.

Some simple words were nice. I appreciate his risk in both saying them, but also in his considering resigning from a very well paid job, to step into the abyss.

I wonder if he’ll be disappointed. Another man was. And I just don’t want that responsibility, I guess.


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We talked

I had a mini freak out recently. Feeling superfluous, and yeah, insecure.

I wasn’t an insecure person before I knew Rog was cheating. I hate it. Feels needy and pathetic.

So, I knew I had to talk to BG. But was lining up my ducks, trying to find the words and the timing. In hospitality, at holiday locations, like where BG lives and works, this is a crazy busy time. I didn’t need to double down on his stress.

We talked.

This morning. On waking.

It was good.

Gentle.

Kind.

He listened well, and discussed. Reassured. Took my concerns seriously and gave well-considered, thoughtful, loving responses. I feel understood and heard.

Not gaslit and told I was imagining things.

That felt really amazing.

But also sad. I realised how if I tried to have these sorts of conversations with Norm, he’d love bomb, minimise and tell me I was overthinking/imagining things. I accepted his love bombing as the balm it was intended as.

But it never lasted. I would be unsettled again very quickly. I never knew why. And thought there was something wrong with me.

“You’re imagining things, Snooks. I love you, you lumox.”

And why even though I Love You is nice, and yeah, important, it’s often just words. BG didn’t even say that. He just said he felt bad if he doesn’t appear affectionate enough (his polite way of saying, I don’t shag you enough, lol.) I replied that there is PLENTY of affection, but I am a bit worried that you don’t feel passionate about me. I even carefully said, I know that treat ’em mean keep ’em keen is a real thing, but I wondered if Chrissy’s unkind treatment of you means the passion levels rose in response. That I’m not trying to compare, but it might be that you don’t feel for me what you felt for her.

He was super cool about that. Agreed that the not knowing what the hell she was playing at made him respond a bit fiercely, trying to “love” her more/back/whatever it was. But that he definitely feels all the feels for me. He was astute, and also said, that could go for you, too, right?

And I answered honestly. That we loved bad people. And his comment was fair. But that I don’t love the person Rog really is.

He honestly got it far better than I expected. No defensiveness, or pulling away, or replying with love bombing. So refreshing!

I left this afternoon while he was working, and Colleen, his ex, arrived and had a gin with me. BG came over and wrapped himself around me, kissing me hard. “I don’t want you to leave, baby. I’m sorry I’m working.”

It’s fine. It’s what he does. But yeah, he reassured me that I’m important to him. Not ‘useful’ or ‘convenient.’ But loved, and desired.

Valued.

My value to Rog was as a labour unit. A broodmare. A maid. A cook. A personal assistant.


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Sensitive

Too sensitive?

I’ve just had the most amazingly honest conversation with BG this morning.

About sex.

Frequency.

Desire.

Intimacy.

Difference.

Adventure/lack of adventure.

Feelings.

He was the most open to this conversation he ever has been. He talked about his theory about how he feels his early life was about drinking, chasing women, fucking them, and the discard. Something he isn’t proud of, but I see it as perfectly understandable in the society he was living in.

He says he doesn’t feel that way about me. That I’m worth so much more. The most he’s ever felt before.

I suggested there is an unconscious Madonna-whore syndrome thing at play here. That he’s put me on an unconscious pedestal, and that affects his ability to see me as a sexually adventurous woman. He said I could be onto something. I giggled and said, “yeah, I’ve felt it from the start. I mean, six times the first time you were with me! Dude! And you then found out I’d only ever been with one man, and kinda put me on this I’m too good for you pedestal. Which is really sweet and funny. But completely wrong!”

Anyway, he’s suggesting he would like to get some counselling about this. He’s previously suggested that he may need chemical help. I have said I don’t ever feel like getting him excited is a problem. He’s freaking huge, and responds impressively to me when I initiate!

Anyway, personal stuff. But such a rewarding conversation. He didn’t get defensive, or upset with himself, which he has done at times in the past.

And immediately after that he was ridiculously horny. Normally I jump on that stuff! But this morning, I said I wanted to shower first.

I went to the bathroom and turned on the shower. Uncharacteristically, he followed me a minute later, enormously aroused. He got me to shave him, I carefully handled and stimulated the goods as I drove the clippers. And then he got me away, and took me hard on the benchtop, the loudest he’s ever been. Christ it was sexy. An angle where I could see every part of him, and his eyes bored into mine.

When you have been rejected by the only man you were madly in love, the only man ever sexual with, it’s difficult. To feel attractive. To feel desirable. To feel sexy.

I naturally feel sexy. Sexuality is a big part of my persona. I LOVE sex!!! But being violently raped, later rejected and serially cheated on, then having a man with a lower libido than my own, those terrible doubts take over. I’m not enough. I’m here, all vulnerable and full of fear and self loathing.

I’m traumatised by the way men have treated me and my sexual body.

So, having scared the neighbours and the dogs, lol, BG has now wandered off to work on this public holiday, with the hugest grin on his face. I know he struggles to believe he deserves this wonderfulness. To deserve how much I love him.

The thing that is such a difficult thing is how to be gentle with ourselves. To not pull ourselves apart about all our not good enoughs. BG thinks that because he hasn’t managed marriage and children, there must be something wrong with him. By the time he got to the point where he wanted that, he struggled to find genuine women who also wanted that. I think I’m lucky to meet him at a point where that desire has passed for him. But that he openly states that he was looking for someone to share his life with, but thought he’d missed the bus.

I remind him often. This was never about you. Their loss. My gain. You also tried to rescue one and her children for possibly “too long.” Because you are a kind man, who makes it a priority to try to make other people happy. Safe. You are not the problem.

And sweetly, he says the same. You are enough. You were always enough. Too good. If you treated him the way you treat me, the man has issues. He lost an incredible woman. A fantastic asset.

I’m feeling so very, very grateful for my wonderful life.

One I worked so damn hard to build.


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Frozen in fear

That’s me.

BG’s PA rang me at work. “Please call him, Paula. He needs you.”

Holy shit.

I knew something was up. No good morning beautiful, or motivational message this morning.

I did call him. He did pick up. He did downplay what is happening.

I asked if he’s okay.

“Yep.”

“Are you, really?”

“Yep.”

“I don’t think you are, really. I’m here. It’s okay to not be okay.”

“I’m okay. Shit to deal with. I’m a too emotional guy. Not your problem.”

“I love that you’re emotional. Not always the cool, calm, rational person making me out to be the emotional idiot. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed. Just know I am here. It is partly my problem when you are struggling with anything, now.”

Radio silence since.

We need to talk. He needs to start believing he can let me in, be supportive. His idea of masculinity is obviously a bit toxic. To him.

I get it. My walls are there, too. Hurt. He’s been through a lot. And work is super stressful right now. Staff letting him down a lot. He thinks it’s his fault. Because that is what he does. Blames himself for everything. His staff and regulars tell me he’s amazing. Supportive. Hard working. TOO hard working. He takes it very personally if anyone is unhappy.

Ick. I’m frozen in fear. So, not my problem, right? Ugh.


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Four weeks

Four weeks.

That is all.

It’s only been four weeks at the barman’s. In full lockdown. Nothing, except supermarkets, pharmacies, dairies (small food and supplies shops) and medical providers have been open this entire time.

I have learned at lot.

I know I like life a lot simpler than it used to be.

I know I eat and drink far too much when I am catering for other people. I have gained too much weight, even with extra running, morning online workouts and yoga, and long dog walks.

I know I am a very lucky person. And am hugely grateful for all my privileges.

And the barman shared something quite important, that affects us going forward.

I am insanely grateful and touched that he trusted me enough to tell me. He hasn’t trusted deeply, or often, in his past.

I have always said, there are reasons for him not being long term partnered.

Reasons, and that long term single man lifestyle has an effect.

He has also been in love, lied to, and had his heart broken. He’s genuinely the sweetest man.

For example, we watched 20/20 last night, about the American Jennair Gerardot murder-suicide case from 2018. The programme seemed quite geared towards sympathy for her ‘poor, grieving husband,’ who was having an affair with the much younger, Meredith Chapman, whom Jennair shot and killed, before turning the gun on herself, after a 24 year marriage.

BG just seethed throughout, almost yelling at the screen. “Why did she do it? You moron, because you broke her heart and mind fucked her, and she couldn’t fucking bear it.”

He gets how devastating infidelity is. How crazy it can make you. I love that about him. He looked at me, as they went over the parts about the married couple still living together having dinner together, etc, whilst Jennair knew about Meredith. Just as I did with Roger and Trinket. I haven’t talked about that time with him, other than to say it was the worst time of my life, I loved him so much, cooked, cleaned, made love with him, my darling of thirty years, my heart – and he kept going back to Trinket. He just shook his head and said, “sorry my baby. What a mindfuck. I’m so sorry….” That just melts me, that he has that level of empathy, without even knowing the half of it.

But, this thing that has reared up is a problem.

I haven’t shared much, as it is all very personal, and I’ve been ruminating, trying to make decisions, and communicate my position with him.

We have been seeing each other, in this iteration, at least, for 11 months now. It’s been so lovely. Quiet, fun weekends. Trips away – to Australia, to other cities and gorgeous coastal towns around NZ. We were scheduled to have a week in Queenstown and the lower South Island before Easter. Of course instead, we had a staycation here – while both still working! We had planned a month long holiday together to the US and Canada in May-June. Obviously not happening now. We have talked about taking leave later, after travel restrictions are lifted, to the top of the South Island. My dear friends down there want to rent a bach in Golden Bay and meet this man of mine, holidaying together, going fishing in G’s boat, doing the wine trails…

So, dating, seeing each other sporadically, it’s been so, so lovely. We made love every day we saw each other. But not really “real life” as such. I haven’t planned for more, because I need to capitalise on the property I bought, and make slow, steady future plans. I am trying to ensure I look after me properly.

BG has loved having me here. He’s a tidy, mostly thoughtful guy, but I have certainly done some laundry, dishwashing, and all the cooking, bar one night. I love to cook, but the supermarket has only been visited twice, and supplies are limited.

I did do a swish, romantic dinner, with dressing up and candles on Sunday. Old school. Beef Wellington, baked cheesecake, and feijoa, vodka and apple jellies.

I don’t have my fully equipped kitchen, so making do has been a fun challenge.

That was so much fun. He was really touched.

His ex, and good friend, Colleen, has been messaging me a lot lately. She’s locked down in her city alone, with her wee dog. I think she’s feeling a bit lonely and stir crazy. She’s all good value. An happy to chat with her to keep her spirits up.

So, the thing is. Deep breath.

Sex.

We have had a pretty good sex life. There were lots of things to learn about each other. But mostly, I thought we were doing well. He was slightly vanilla. He likes a few more adventurous, fun things. But I put that vanilla-ness down to newness, trust building, his awareness that I find him quite large, worrying about hurting me, etc.

Staying here, he’s super affectionate, silly, happy, goofy, upbeat, appreciative.

But, the sex pretty much stopped. I have initiated most throughout the whole time we have been together. I have analysed that to death, of course. And think it is partly to do with fear. Fear of rejection. Fear of not having “regular supply.” Fear of looking like a sex pest. Fear of looking like he’s disrespectful to women (his Catholic boarding school education, his whole family are women, mother, two sisters, nieces, only one nephew…) He seems to be happy when I do, but I thought, hang on, it would be nice if he did a bit, right? Be nice to be pursued. (Sadly, I had a man who always wanted me, so am wary of that bullshit too!)

So, I stopped. And we went possibly nearly two weeks without! I was dying! And so, I finally talked PROPERLY with him about it. I mean, we’d talked. But it was very shallow.

We sat down, with a glass of wine, and I laid it on the table (pardon the pun!) We need to talk about sex. Expectations. Needs. Wants. I feel like you’re not sexually attracted to me. I know you like me, but I don’t feel wanted, and I am wanton. Like, you can’t get enough of me. I feel like that about you.

Is there anything I am doing, or am not doing that is a problem for you? Or is it just that there’s a lack of chemistry. You know, like, you like me, but don’t lust after me? That’s okay. You can’t help that if that’s the case.

He gets very sad when I talk about this. He apologised profusely, told me he wants to be with me, wants no one else, that I’m gorgeous, sexy, everything he wants, that he doesn’t know what’s wrong with him. I said you’re 54, on meds for hypertension, and you know we could both stand to be a bit fitter, be kind to yourself, I know the more pressure, the worse this can be. I just want to talk, not ignore things. Not make you feel small or not enough.

He’s mentioned before that this has happened in previous relationships. So blames himself. There’s no need for blame. But communication and trying to solve things together is key.

As we got further down the track during this awkward, but loving talk, he looked sadly at me, grabbed my hands and said, “there’s something else that’s been worrying me. That I need to tell you.” He took a huge breath. “I’ve been using porn. Not since you’ve been here though. I feel like shit. It’s not good, it doesn’t make me feel good. I’m fucking embarrassed, and it’s having a detrimental effect on me. I’m so sorry.”

I looked at him and said, “that’s okay. Totally understandable. You’re a man who’s been single a lot, you have to get your kicks somehow, if you weren’t getting it elsewhere. I can deal with porn, quite like some, sometimes, not a big thing for me that you watch. I am happy to join in sometimes if you want.” He replied, “no! I don’t want to use it, view it, view it with you, or alone. I feel disgusted.”

I asked, “is it kinda deviant porn? Something a bit out there?”

“Oh no! Pretty standard, mindless, bullshit fucking. Nothing weird or fucked up.”

He was super upset.

I gently asked if he has always been a consumer of said porn. He replied, “no. It’s only been about the last two years. And not any since you’ve been here.” So, even my non-maths brain could see that meant he was using porn to get off during the week, when I am not around. I have no problem with porn usage. I know some people become addicted and desensitised to real live women and their real, imperfect bodies. I know it’s an industry built on a bit of human misery, yes, some say they feel empowered, personal choice. But I am no prude about it. I like erotica, and occasionally porn is genuinely erotic if done well. I also know a lot is laughable. I said I have absolutely no problem if you feel porn gets you what you need, especially considering that I am not here usually. But I can see you feel it’s a problem, so I support you in whatever you need here.

So, emboldened, I finally broached a sexual need of mine. One that just hasn’t happened with him. And that seemed to go well, so I was quite pleased with myself.

Yay! Good, honest, open conversation.

Then nothing.

Since then, nothing. He hasn’t addressed any of it. And until yesterday morning, many, many days later, no sex, no approaches for sex…and then we had a wham, bam, thank you ma’am sesh. My stated need ignored completely.

Hmmm

I’m a pretty giving, caring person. I’ve given a huge amount sexually, too. I love everything about being naked with him. And I want to help. But, the reality is, I need to have a really good think about what I can deal with. I asked for something specific, for me (and I never bloody well do that!) And got ignored. Yes, it needs to be discussed further. Yes, I need to give it time, reiterate, restate my needs. His discussion about us moving in together, well, that won’t be happening. At least anytime soon.

We are in full lockdown until Tuesday. We are then down to Alert Level 3, which is basically same, except takeaway food options are going to be allowed to reopen, for at least another two weeks. We are not supposed to move.

However, I am going home. My youngest daughter needs to come home to me, she and her sister had a traumatic incident the other night, and she’s barely hanging in there. I need to go home, give myself time to think, to work out how to keep communicating with this man.

He is sad I’m going home. Sent me a message yesterday saying he’s so glad the lockdown was extended, as he needs time to wean himself off me being here.

I never had any problems communicating (from my side, at least) with my darling, before. I talked, we talked, it seemed so easy, so natural. Obviously, that was just me, as Rog never shared his secrets with me.

I had none.

Was a open book. When I had to start building a wall around me, I did such a damn good job, I’m finding it hard to break out of my fortress. And hey, I did. Poked my head above the parapet.

And was pretty much ignored. Go me. All my bravery there was SOOO worth it.

I’m a very supportive and understanding partner. I really am. But it’s not my job to fix a broken man. That said, it’s also not his job to be my everything. I know that. However, to be looked after when I ask for a tiny bit of help, would be an amazing goodwill gesture, huh?

So, there you go. All relationships require love, sacrifice, understanding. I’ve done that my whole life. But I am super aware that I don’t need another flatmate I don’t fuck. I want to be with this man. But I know I need more.

Trouble in paradise. Literally. I knew any problems would be exposed during lockdown. I’m a big girl. If this is not for me, I will walk away. But I need to ensure we both give this our best shot. He deserves someone like me, someone who is compatible with him, his friends, family, lifestyle. I think I can be that person. But I also deserve to feel desired, loved, ‘needed,’ – enough!

He’s asked me to come over to his office to work alongside him, and I just am processing a bit right now, so have stayed put for now.

Me. Who usually moves heaven and earth to be we with him (he’s pretty good at that too, coming over to my place midweek a few times, to surprise me.)

I’m not having another person let me feel like I’m not worthy. I don’t think it’s that. I think he’s dealing with a libido affected by age, overuse of artificial stimuli, and the sudden appearance of a woman with a high libido in his life after years of dampening down his own to survive. I get it, I had to do that when Roger left me to fuck his whore cunt.

I am happy to work with him, do more to help. Get professional help, if required. But ignoring my requests will not be tolerated for long.


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Them feelz ❤

I went outside this morning, to plant some of the seedling vegetables I started.

BG was doing a bit of office work. On a Saturday morning, of course! I usually run on the beach with the dog in the mornings, but he said he’d like to take her for a walk with me. We usually do that in the evenings. So I waited for him.

His section is small. Small house. Small property.

Anyway, I got back inside after hearing him call out. He’d tried phoning me, thinking I’d gone without him, lol.

No. I just kept busy while he got side tracked.

The panic! He was genuinely so relieved to see I was still here. Grabbed me and squeezed me hard.

Naw ❤

I have said I will need to go home when our covid alert level gets lowered. I have a leaking roof, fertiliser to apply, firewood to split, animals to give zinc bolus top ups to.

Let alone work. Which I can still do from home in level 3.

I told him this morning, and said, “you’ll be relieved to have your personal space back.”

He says he doesn’t want me to go, that it has been fantastic having me here. He can’t leave as is organising a food delivery service for his work, dealing with staff and how they can make it work under a slightly less strict regime. A completely new way of doing things, and staff who can come back to work, train, and do some maintenance jobs until they can open again.

The thing is, we’ve run into an issue that I need to consider carefully. He is worried it may be a problem for me.

And honestly? I just don’t know. It’s okay right now, but if things can’t change, it may become a problem, long term.

We just walked the dog for nearly three hours. She’s exhausted!

And about an hour in, BG had one of his panic attacks. I’ve seen them before, and they always worry me, I feel so useless.

He says he’s used to them. I know what he means. Me too. Mine are different, and I have more nightmares than full blown panic attacks these days.

We’ve talked properly, at last. Something came out of the woodwork, something he’s ashamed of. Not sure how we can go forward, in a healthier manner. It’s going to need some work, and a lot of support.

And I finally broached the subject of a need (want?) I have that he hasn’t picked up on. Something I have seriously needed to address for months.

Which was great. I was relieved I got it out.

But.

Nothing has changed. We (mostly him tbh) are still avoiding both of these things again. Ugh.

Life is a weird thing, huh?


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What the barman did next

So, after the weekend, and BG’s disclosure of a ONS when he was in a new relationship in his mid 20s – a relationship he had started with an old friend – that he subsequently ended, realising a ONS meant he was not ready, mature enough, or sufficiently in love with his friend/then partner to be with her, I was a little bit quiet.

He asked if I was okay, that he was sorry for doing it, but he was aware that it was probably difficult for me, given my history with a cheater.

I was mostly okay. But knew I needed to give myself time, space and all the facts, to make some decisions.

I had decided there is no room in my life for people who have cheated on their long term partners.

Last night, I finished work and drove over to see him. He ended up with a bit of a COVID-19 crisis. It has been resolved, we think, with some advice from the Ministry of Health. He has shut the Club down for now, to ensure all staff and patrons are safe.

While he was waiting, on hold, I cooked some new potatoes (carbs, I rarely eat them) made a garden salad with my veggies, and cooked a couple of Hereford Prime scotch fillets rare.

Man bliss.

While we ate, with a stunning Syrah to match, he talked. I didn’t mention a thing, or bring the topic up.

He offered to “list” his past partners for me, lol. I declined. I did then ask if he had ever cheated on anyone else. He said no. But he knows that the mother of his stepkids (and he still talks to her regularly, so relationship is good) was hurt when he left her. He kept coming back to help her with things around her house and the kids when she needed help. She begged him to come back, and he did, tried again with her (they dated for about ten or eleven years, but never lived together.) He knew his heart was no longer in it. That he never really loved her, but he did care about them all. Just no real passion, or deep connection. So he left again. No other woman was involved, and I have had this verified by friends and his stepdaughter.

He talked about his 16 years in his previous town, and how there were a few women, some he dated, a couple were more casual, there was no one special. And he only ever dated one at a time, no fucking the whole town like a complete lothario. And he has previously told me that he made a rule that he didn’t date/shag anyone local when he moved here over four years ago.

This was all completely voluntary info. He must have sensed my slight quietening at the weekend after he disclosed the ONS while with Colleen.

He then told me he was a complete open book with Chrissy. She actually demanded it. He had to delete most women off his contacts list. Only really leaving his Mum, sisters and aunts, lol!

He did it, for her. They lived in different countries the first two years they were together.

However, this was not a reciprocal arrangement. She had access to his phone, emails, etc, but he wasn’t allowed to see hers ever.

He told me he should have realised that was not okay. His friends told him that was a red flag, but he was in serious denial.

Familiar territory for me. My friends insisted that Roger’s relationship (friendship, apparently 😂) with Leanne was not safe. I brushed off their advice, saying, “oh, you don’t know us, we TRUST each other…”🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️

BG looked at me and said, “you can look at my phone anytime, and I’ll delete anyone you are uncomfortable about. Including Colleen. I want you to be happy and feel safe.”

I just took his hand, and said, “you don’t know me very well yet. But I hope these past ten months have shown you that I am a trusting person, I don’t really get jealous, am not controlling in any way. I am aware that I got fucked over with this chill attitude. But I honestly don’t believe you can stop cheating if that is what someone is determined to do. I have no desire to play relationship police ever again. I never was, until Leanne. Then I became hyper-vigilant. I also developed, or rather recognised, my intuition. I “knew” or “felt” the times that Roger met other women. In my body. I can remember the odd bodily feelings I had the night I drove home from the sales, without having met up with him. I didn’t recognise it then, but it happened more and more. The times he was with her. The times he was with Trinket. The times he returns up here, I feel it. Less so as time goes on, with us over. But I “knew” the night he fucked her again, two years, almost to the day since their affair was supposedly “over.”

I felt that shit, in my stomach, on my skin. I listen to what my body tells me about people way more now.

We talked some more, and I said that as long as he told me about these things, I am okay. He already knew that. He (seems to at least) always tells me if he is meeting old friends, especially women. And he volunteered the information that decades ago, he had a thing with Colleen, as soon as he was able to, the first time I met her. She had arrived in town unexpectedly, on her way home from a holiday.

I dunno. I think there is a difference between a ONS, and immediate confession, without any prompting, and the likes of what Rog did. Fucking a prostitute, and lying to me about that for twenty-five years (when I would probably have been quite forgiving, as we were young, and I still believe it was booze, peer pressure and a lot of curiosity) and denying a year and a half long affair, when I questioned him several times, when he was constantly texting her, and telling me he loved me…that is a totally different kettle of fish.

There was no planning involved in BG’s one night stand. It was a stupid thing that led him to end his live in relationship with an unsuitable and not-thirty-years-three-kids-and-millions-of-dollars invested partner.

He didn’t open at least three online dating profiles, take squillions of selfies, plan the words he’d use to meet other women. All while telling his (already cheated on) partner he would wait forever for her.

Unlike Roger.

Even those counselling people to leave cheaters delineate about this, Tracy Schorn, AKA Chump Lady writes;

Points I’ve made about cheaters for years:

1. Affairs don’t “just happen” — they’re planned. No one fills out detailed dating profiles for shits and giggles.

2. The exit affair or the one-night-stand are not the rules, they are the exceptions. Judging by the enormity of this data dump we can conclude that cheaters are recurrent and repeat offenders. They go back to the no-strings-attached sex well over and over again. Serial cheating is a lifestyle.

3. Serial cheating is about entitlement. Special people don’t need precautions (or condoms). Special people don’t get caught. Special people are entitled to double lives because their need for excitement outweighs their chumps’ well-being.

Yeah, so, the upshot is, I am proceeding.

With extreme caution. And honest and open communication.

In the middle of the night, I got some kind of tummy bug. Up spewing. So I moved to the couch, so as not to disturb BG.

He woke this morning, reached for me and stumbled out, naked, apologising if his snoring woke me.

I didn’t hear him snore. Lol. He does. But he snuggled me, as I said I didn’t want to disturb him, nor make him sick. I took the day off, and slept a little after he left for work. On his return, as I left, and offered my cheek, he grasped my face and kissed me hard, saying, “I missed you, and I’m not letting you go with a kiss on the cheek!”

So, I have recovered about 90%, and am getting some jobs done. Hungry. So must be feeling better. Must eat something.

This is a brave new world, with all that is going on. Hope everyone is remaining calm, clean and safe xxx