A bilemma

I’m so happy to be back “home” right now. Quotations necessary because I don’t have a home right now.

I’ve expanded my tindering to men and women, if only to explore all sides of me and maybe see what others see in me. Hence why I’m back tonight after my first date with a cis straight guy from Tinder, and hence why I dragged myself to the nearest queer bar to nurse a beer, hug myself to myself, reassure myself that I’m safe, and talk with an incredibly charming, much older butch.

The guy I met up with was easy going. I wasn’t not attracted to him. But by the end of the evening, when we were at a punk show and he was standing behind me rubbing my shoulders, I felt suddenly claustrophobic. I gave him a hug and told him to enjoy the rest of the show just before I bolted. On the train, I wanted to cry. I was shaking. I made it all the way to the queer bar and sat down with relief, nursing my $3 beer and letting the evening sink in. He hadn’t even kissed me; all he did was barely more than friends would do to one another.

I texted two friends about it, one of whom is monosexual and didn’t understand at all the need to explore other genders; and the other who tends toward the monosexual but gets it. I think a big part of biphobia in the queer world is just not understanding the ways in which experiencing different genders are inherently different experiences.

I don’t get it. Alright, some more context: I have been (very explicitly) texting another cis straight guy from Tinder. It gets me so hot and bothered that I sometimes have trouble concentrating on work. He asks me about my preferences, turns my individuality into something fun/cute/sexy, and makes me feel really validated. I, on the other hand, imagine myself relinquishing control, giving it up to someone else bigger and more masculine, and playing to my own strengths in a cishet context for the first time in my life (rather than trying to be someone else within that context). I wish I weren’t into it, but I am. I wish it were about dating someone, but it’s not: he’s got no redeeming qualities. We’re supposed to meet up in a few days, quite honestly just to have sex. I’m not sure yet if I’ll go through with it. It makes me feel really dirty and guilty, especially as someone who identifies as a queer woman, to talk about hooking up with someone so overtly heteronormative; but at the same time undeniably excited. In immersing myself in queerness, cisheteronormativity has become taboo. In discovering sex that respects others’ bodies, being used on my terms feels like a way to reclaim my own body from other peoples’ terms.

Why is it that one guy rubbing my shoulders is more invasive than another guy sexting me? What will happen should guy number 2 and I actually meet? (I predict I will be into it, and then run outside to cry soon after.)

Where does that leave my sexuality, that I can date women but I can’t date men but that I want to sleep with men but also the thought of a man’s hands on me makes me want to curl up in a tight ball, retreat into a shell, and never emerge?

Do I really think that hooking up with, or even just getting a shoulder rub from, a man would be simpler than hooking up with other genders?

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What are my wants and needs?

Holy shit. I’m part of the problem. I got invited to play Puerto Rico with some friends of friends (distancing myself now). The game entails guess what, literally colonizing the island of PR, via various acquisitions of resources and building of markets and trading houses and resource storage (as if the island is completely wild and NOBODY was living there before). Also you’re supposed to activate the resources you get by amassing colonists, which are LITTLE BROWN CHIPS. I’m part of the problem because I played through, though making it clear I would never play it again. It’s a well thought out game but very un-woke. Just… don’t buy this game. Don’t give your money to this bullshit.

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My wants and needs. What are they? I have to almost switch modes from doing something technical to exploring my needs; distractions in daily life seep into the cracks of my thesis, freeze there, and threaten to splinter the whole thing. I still wonder if I should have delayed applying and given myself a few years to know myself better. It would have made me a better scientist.

I went on Tinder, created a super chill profile that misled people into thinking I was a super chill person, and reeled in a few. One person I started hanging out with is going through their own breakup, so we were of course a great match to process feelings together. They had a picture of themselves smiling, they were masculine of center, they were not skinny, they had beautiful curls. So of course I’ve taken to processing feelings about exes with the first queer friend I’ve made in a while, with whom I definitely wish I could make out with.

For one tho, they definitely don’t seem to go for my type or send flirty vibes. For another, I’m just looking for a rebound and I’d hate to ruin another queer friendship with dating. I am drifting not really living in one place and my ex didn’t really wanna have sex toward the end (at least, not with me…) and I need something comforting and validating.

I want this and other friendships. But I also would like to supplement that with a thing that fills the void left by all the other shit. I miss being held. I miss making out. I miss touching skin and being touched back.

And for that I need to remember to have a work life balance, to fill my mind with my graduation strategy and my publication strategy and bigger goals that remind me that I’m more than my body.

Whew.

With 20 minutes to kill before my already-postponed Tinder date, I got another text. “Can we push it back another 30-45? Got caught up at work.” Feeling relief, I suggested putting it off to another day. I sat down on a bench in a tiny park wedged between three roads, listening to the traffic. My shoulders sighed with relief, tired of carting around my deodorant, tooth brush, computer, back-up underwear and t-shirt, book, and all my chargers. I have time to spare for the first time all week. Free time is unpleasant these days.

My ex had called me the night before, needing to talk to someone after a draining fight with her family. I stupidly felt the need to comfort her etc etc, fell asleep there. The next morning I cleaned the apt a little, got my stuff in order, talked with her a bit, then I headed out. It took me until 6 hours later, sitting on that park bench, to let the full weight of her telling me she fucked someone else to hit me. After she’d told me she wasn’t that sexual of a person, (even though she cheated on me and fucked someone like less than a month after breaking up w me) to get out of sleeping with me for the last like month and a half of our relationship, instead of just telling me she wasn’t into me anymore. She seems perfectly capable of being sexual with everyone else. Just tell me you need me more than you love me, so I don’t feel like a repulsive fucking human being.

That’s who I’m living with right now. A person who needs me but doesn’t want me. I fell for it.

I texted my friend asking for a place to crash.

So there I was sitting on a bench, with my change of clothes and all my toiletries in my bag, plus everything I need to go to work, wondering if I had time to go home before hanging out w friends for movie night.

But then I realized who I was and where I was and who was living in the place I’m paying for; I don’t have a home right now. I teared up like the pathetic little shit I was, waiting for my friend to get back to me.

I don’t think I’ve been loving myself enough.