“Let’s be friends”

Me:
I don’t want this to be all about sex. I’m not a toy, I’d like you to relate to me as a friend and someone you want to get to know as a person too. I’m more than a hot body.

Him:
Yes of course, I want to know all of you, I respect women. Here, let me bombard you with several messages a day and lots of effort

Me or him:
I’m not sure about dating right now, let’s just be friends

Him:
*tumbleweed*

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How did my wonderful “I want to know you because I like you as a person” companion become zero contact once the sexual part of the offer was off the table?

Welcome to The Sex Zone

There are a lot of men who once they start relating to a woman sexually then lose the ability to think of her in any other way. And no, not all men, it’s never “all men” is it? But if you identify as a man don’t automatically imagine I don’t mean you, consider my words and examples and think about whether you can do something differently in future.

And for those wonderful male friends I have who in the distant past saw (or who am I kidding, sometimes still do see) me sexually but value my friendship for all the non genital bumping bits I thank you from the bottom of my soul. I love you and I cherish what we have so hard.

Once upon a time I was monogamous and long term married. Men saw me as a great person to talk to, a friend, a sounding board, an adviser, a mentor, a drinking buddy.

Then when I became polyamorous some of those men realised I was also available for sex too. Almost overnight their attitude towards me changed. Some started sending me half naked photos and telling me what they wanted to do to me. One stopped being the cute attentive friend he’d been for many years and decided to hit on me at my most vulnerable point. A few stopped talking to me about anything apart from sex. One disrespected all my boundaries continually and carried on trying to hit on me until I became so exhausted I just gave in.

It’s not that I *don’t* want to talk about sex, or even that I don’t want sex with these guys. It’s just that once upon a time I was more than that and then I wasn’t.

Relating to a woman sexually does not mean you can’t relate to her in any other way.

I understand it more when I meet someone on a dating app first. That’s the reason they’re there, for sure. Sex. Relationships. Those men started interacting with me because they wanted sex.

However, for me, attraction needs to go beyond the physical desire to caress each other’s genitals a lot. I’m also not great at deleting people from my life. I never have been and never will be. If you want to gain my trust enough to really get to know me, you need to prove you’ll stick around a bit.

So when I meet someone I might like to have sex with I’m considering whether you’ll still be there if we break up as a couple, or if you’ll still be there if I have a depressive and asexual phase at some point in the future.

I’m also asking you to get to know the rest of me. Because I have way more to offer than blue eyes and perky breasts.

I mean they’re great and all and I totally don’t mind them being the first thing you noticed. That’s ok. But I ask you to decide whether you like my intellect and creativity too and my strength of self because if you’re going to get to know me and then realise my brain doesn’t match the personality you projected onto my body we’re not going to last long.

When I say “I want to be friends” often I’m saying “I don’t trust you to stick around”

Occasionally I say “I don’t trust you to stick around” through my actions not my words. I do this by being slightly distant until I’ve worked out how likely you are to do a disappearing act. Maybe I’ll ask you to friend me on Facebook so I can see how often you interact with me in a space where you’re less able to perform for me. (Again, I’m working on this. I realise trust is something which to most people is innate.)

When I take sex away and you take your friendship away, however I’ve met you, I find that confusing and hurtful.

I’m more than walking genitals and I make this noticeably clear right from the start.

Once upon a time I thought maybe it had something to do with who I was. Until I realised many women find the same situation happens to them.

You don’t put kindness in and get sex out. Effort does not equal sexual reward.

I wonder if the lack of back characterisation of ‘hot women’ in films and TV programs is what exacerbates this problem. The hot women stride into the protagonist’s life, are very often his “reward” for being “such a good guy” and then walk back out without displaying any needs or emotion. In horror films the woman with the best tits gets to show them to everyone and then dies first. Punishment for being sexual but also punishment for being so damn attractive.

Think about it, the lead female is not the most stereotypically attractive. She’s allowed to have a back story and her feelings validated because she’s a girl next door type so good looking enough to be allowed to be human.

With this fictional example being so widespread it’s nearly become a Joseph Campbell style archetype it’s no wonder sometimes men see women they’re sexually attracted to as being one dimensional. Systemic patriarchy hurts everyone and guys, I feel bad for you too because you’re missing out on amazing women in your life because you can’t see them for anything but sexy times.

Real hot women aren’t your reward for persistence or being “a good guy”

They’re allowed to exist in your life on a non sexual level.

When you’ve finished thinking about the sex, don’t throw them away.

Written by

Rantings of a polyamorous, pansexual, switch-bitch bipolar-bear warrior. No expert, no guru, just navigating my world

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