A Little Back Story by Stupid Affection-Starved Me

After reading my first post, I realized that many of you might wonder how all this started and why I was dating a man such as this to begin with.  I will keep this as brief as possible, which may not be possible.  It all started a year ago in april.  I broke off a relationship with a man who started out wonderful and turned out to be an alcoholic bully.  I’d met him on an internet dating site, which is where I meet most of the men I date.  I’m also beginning to wonder if this is such a great idea anymore, but I’ll address that in another post.

I took a year off from dating, but didn’t kill my profiles (I had three) until November of last yeat.  On May 10, 2011, a flood of emails from Plenty of Fish hit my in box.  I’d quit that account.  Totally.  So I highlighted all of them (or so I thought) and clicked “delete!”  Oops.  I missed one.  So I opened it – just out of curiosity.  Hey  – he was cute.  I’m human.  His email proved he’d read my profile and was interested in many of the same things I was interested in.  Still, I wasn’t certain I wanted to date.  So on May 12, I wrote him back, saying:  “Thanks but no thanks.”  Well, that didn’t phase him a bit.  He replies with something along the lines of “hey it’s just me, I’m harmless, give me a shot.”  Oh, this should have been a clue.  I replied with:  “I went out and re-wrote my profile.  I think POF burped and reactivated it and right now I’m not in a dating mode.  So I figure if my profile is to be reactivated without my knowledge, I’ll keep it up and let folks know where I am.”  So he read it, came back and wrote:  “ouch!  I’m sorry you’ve been so hurt.”  Stupid, affection-starved me.  I thought I recognized sincerity.  So the conversation began.

Two weeks of email.  Then he asks for my phone number.  So I hand it over without a second thought.  We talk.  For hours.  We’re both amazed at how much we are alike ,how much we can laugh with each other, at the sheer comfort level.  He goes to the beach over Memorial day weekend with his son and his son’s friend.  He calls me daily from there.   Oh, but he’s a talkin’ man!  I’m loving this.

He comes back from vacation, calls me and wants to meet me the next day.  I agreed.  Two hours later, I’m in email telling him I’m skittish and jittery because I’d just realized he’d said he was going to PICK ME UP AT MY HOME.  That shit’s not cool, not with a stranger. So I begged off, and asked for more time.  He replied, again, with another “hey – it’s just me.  Wed would work really well for me if you can stand the company.”  Did he not read my email?

So I replied with a thank you but that I might be able to do it in a week, but in the meantime, could we quiet our contact a bit, because I was feeling overwhelmed.  This guy was all over me in phone and email.  I should have KNOWN.   He replies with one word:  “ok.”

Yeah, there’s a clue.  Thwarted, unhappy, but knows there’s a chance so he’s not going to say anything too damaging, so “ok” is pretty safe.

Two days go by.  He doesn’t hear from me.  Then he emails something to the effect that while he likes the sounds of crickets, it’s pretty quiet and am I okay?  Stupid, affection-starved me, I reply with a gushing apology for being so negligent as to “ignore” him for two whole days.  Someone hit me with a sledgehammer.  NOW.

So it begins again.  Stuck to me like a limpet in phone and email.  We meet.  Instant, and I mean INSTANT comfort level for both of us.  And I really mean that.  I felt like I’d known him for years and years.  That’s because I had – in my ex-husband, my ex-boyfriends, my bad dates, etc.

I’m also somewhat of an empath and I was reading his energy.  It was a jumbled mess.  I sorted it out.  This guy really DUG me.  Totally.  What I didn’t sort out was that he’s desperate.

So we both left feeling great.  I asked him for a hug when we left, first because I really did want a hug, but as an empath, if I hug a person, I can really tell what their state of mind is.  This guy was feeling like he’d found his next wife.  Scary shit.  But apparently not scary enough for me.

He calls me that night and asks me to dinner for the weekend.  He says he’ll pick me up at my house.  We go to a fabulous little restaurant close to me and for three hours had a beautiful time.  He ordered, since I was unfamiliar with the cuisine.  Before the food came, he reaches across the table, brushes my hair back and palms my left earring – it was long and dangly – I’d made it – I’m a silversmith.  Okay – when a man does that, he’s totally interested.  Men don’t touch – and especially not that deliberately, if they’re not interested.

He told me how lovely I looked.  He made eye contact, but not deep-penetrating eye contact – he did the glance, look away, glance, look away.  Another man-signal.  He sat back in his chair, one arm on the back of the chair the other on the chair next to him, his legs wide apart.  Total male posturing.  Control posturing, but also: “I’m digging you” posturing.

As we leave, he puts his hand in the small of my back to “guide” me through the non-existent maze of people.  Another “i’m really into you” signal.

We drive around downtown in his convertible and then go back to my place and sit on the patio talking.  Then it’s time for him to go home.  He hugs me but doesn’t attempt to kiss me.  Great – a man who knows how to do things.

Email next day that he had a great time, really loved my company.  Called me to talk about it.  Called me all week.  Emailed all week.  Told me he saw long-term potential relationship potential in me.  This man really knows how to reel a woman in.

The following week he asked me to his home for dinner.  I arrive.  His son is there.  Now, I ask you – what custodial parent, in their right mind, is going to bring a woman home to be around their custodial special needs child on a third date unless he was positive this woman is someone he is going to be serious about?  Apparently this man isn’t in his right mind.

Apparently I wasn’t in my right mind.  He brews his own beer.  I asked him why.  His reply:  (are you sitting down?)  “So I never run out.”  Oh that should have been the toreador smothering me with the red flag.  I didn’t notice the flag, much less the toreador.

We ate, I drank two beers, he drank 4 while I was there and I now know he’d probably had a few before I’d arrived.   The entire time he’s moving around the kitchen effortlessly – he’s an amazing cook.  Each time he walks by me he touches me, he brushes his fingertips across my shoulders, kisses my neck, tells me I’m lovely.  Wouldn’t you be swooning?  Oh probably  not.  You’re probably smarter than I am.

Dinner was fabulous, outdoor conversation around a smoking firepit was amazing, and he’s still touching me.  I’m not touching him as much as he’s touching me – for some reason I didn’t think he’d welcome it.  I was already feeling his control issues.

Time for me to leave, so he walks me to my car, hugs me tightly, and gives me a hen-peck on the lips.  You couldn’t call it a kiss, it was like a rooster pecking at seed. I was in heaven.  Stupid, affection-starved me.

He tells me to call when I get home, so I do.  First words out of his mouth:  “I already miss you.”  Sigh.  Swoon.  Woweezowee!  I have been clubbed many times with the idiot bat but this time I think I was down for the count on the first swing.

He says he’s lying in bed, looking at the ceiling fan and “g’nite.  sweet dreams!”

So I go to bed, after posting on facebook about my totally FABULOUS evening.  Ugh.

Phone and email continue.  Wed of that week, I miss a phone call from him.  He leaves a message that says:  “you create beauty because you ARE beauty.”   Be still my beating heart.

Phone and email continue.

Thursday I went to volunteer with a concert venue.  I help the owner from time to time.  I’d emailed Mr. Man earlier in the week inviting him to come along but he never replied, so I figured he wasn’t interested.

He called me while I was on my way to the venue.  I couldn’t answer because I was fiddling with my GPS.  I forgot about his call until I got home at 2:00 a.m.  and then emailed telling him I was sorry I’d missed his call but was at a concert and didn’t get in until late.

His reply:  (are you sitting down?)  “What concert?  Who went?”

Excuse the hell out of ME?  We’re not in a committed relationship.  HE had been invited.  I chose not to tell him anything other than this:  “you were invited but I never heard back from you”  and then I posted the concert link.

No reply.

This is where I think it all started to go downhill.

Anyway, I’m a silversmith and I make sterling suncatchers (among other things) and his kitchen window was perfect for such a thing with the late afternoon sun streaming in.  so I made him one that I knew would have meaning for him.  I even hand-covered the box with special paper and hand made a card for him.

He loved it.  Hung it immediately.  So as we’re watching rainbows dance around his kitchen, he jumps up from his chair, pulls one of his lovely little Yixing teapots off a shelf (he collects them and they are his pride and joy), and goes to rinse it.  I’m thinking he’s going to make tea.  No.  He sets it in front of me and says:  “Only a very special person would get one of these.”  Okay, nice thought bub, but here’s the issue with it:

1.  there was no thought put into it.  He didn’t carefully go through his teapots to decide which might best suit me.  He just grabbed the first one he saw.  It was right in front of him.

2. As soon as he sat back down and saw the gaping hole on the shelf his OCD kicked in and he jumped up, got another teapot and moved it to that spot.

I didn’t notice any of this at the time.  I was too overwhelmed (stupid, affection-starved me) by the “kindness and generosity” of Mr. Man giving me one of his treasures.

This was my third visit to his house, BTW.  His son wasn’t there.  He was just as affectionate, but something weird happened.  We were sitting on the sofa and he was rubbing my bare feet.  OMG do I like my feet rubbed.  He was getting his thumb right in my arch and it was better than some sex I’ve had.  I was speechless.  I literally couldn’t talk.  So then he moves up to my calf and I’m thinking, “whoa, now we’re getting somewhere.”  And then stops.  dumps my legs off his lap.  Picks up his laptop and starts burning a CD.  Okaaay then.

We ate dinner – which was fabulous.  I’ll give him this – he can cook.  Then we went out to fly his radio-controlled airplanes.  I was excited about this because I hadn’t done it since I was 7.  I told him so.  I hugged him when he told me we were going to do it.  My face lit up like the national Christmas tree.  So did his.  So off we go.  Well, my plan crash-landed and the propeller came off.  So we’re looking for it and the entire time he’s being passive-aggressively critical of my skills.   Well excuse the fuck outta me, folks, but I hadn’t done anything like this for 43 years.  I’m allowed to be rusty.  So he flies his plane.  His nose-dives, the cockpit comes off and the batteries fly out.  Excuses all over the place but not a bit of “Well, I guess I need some practice, too, huh?”  Nope – it was the breeze, we never should have come out there, now he was going to have to fix it, yadda yadda, and somehow – SOMEHOW – his plane’s nosedive became MY fault!

We got back to his house and as it was 8;15 and I knew he had to pick his son up at 9, I told him I was going to get ready and go.  He says:  “No.  I want you to stay until I leave.”  I see this now for what it was.  Then, I thought it was because he wanted my company.

So we left together and this time, only a hug at the car, no kiss.  I called him when I arrived home.  No return phone call.

Next day he calls to tell me he’s sorry he missed my call.  Whatever.  By this time I’m beginning to see patterns emerge.

We email and call during the week and then we have the first phone call I reference in my first post.  The one where he calls while he’s preparing dinner and cuts me off.

We haven’t seen each other since.  Oh, we’ve talked, we’ve emailed.  the last straw for me, was on Tuesday.  He called me and I asked to get together this week.  He hedged.  He said:  “Oh, well, I need to see how my week is shaping up.  Some things are falling into place and I’m not sure.  I also think I’m going to go kayaking in WV this weekend with friends.”  So I said – “well, if we can, Thursday is a good day for me.”   He said that would probably work for him, too.

Wednesday I find out that he’s hosting a VIP.  He’s hosting someone who is a traveling social activist, and someone he KNEW I’d want to meet.  He was hosting him for the night, and he just drops this into an email.  He’d known he was going to do this; he’d known about it for at least two days if not a week.  I’d been busily setting up places for this man to stay on his travels myself, but Mr. Man and I hadn’t talked about this – we each did not know the other was interested in this man’s travels and work.  But he just drops it in, as an aside, in an email on Wed that says:  “oh, and after my eye surgery, I’m going to go pick up a wandering soul in search of America. I’m hosting him tonight.”  and sends me the link.  I was blown away.  I was furious.  There was no way he could have missed my comments on this man’s FB page, so he KNEW that I KNEW.

That decided me.  I emailed him back and said:  “Have fun with ______ and I hope your eye surgery goes well.  I think I’m going to take Thursday to myself and decompress from the week.  I’ll see you at some point.  Maybe this weekend if you don’t go to WV.”

He wrote back a pompous email that described all the “unplanned” diversity in his kitchen (total bullshit because he is a very careful planner) the night of his guest’s stay.

That was when I decided I was done.  That was the night I made the phone call at 12:45 am telling him I needed to talk to him because I was in a bit of a muddle and could we meet somewhere to talk?  And then he got ugly.  The rest of the story is above this post.

I think I dodged a bullet.  I certainly did feel comfortable with him.  He was just as manipulative, controlling and angry as my ex, my father, and every other ex-boyfriend i’ve had.  He fit my pattern so well I thought he was outside of it.

Next post will be on patterns.  🙂

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