I wrote an insanely sane post about this topic but didn't save it when I signed out last time. This hybrid post is the short-short version of the glorious and forever lost original.It's fitting since short-term dating is also my attempt to merge an abbreviated version of the emotional intimacy of a relationship and the physical aspect of casual sex. Don't bother me with moral relativism, I'm retyping.
The site offers several choices in how you advertise your interest. Most of the past year I've been window shopping so I put out (or rather, didn't...) 'friends' and 'long-distance' penpals. I didn't even bother with 'activity partners' since I figured friends would fall under that category if platonic relations was their true interest. Okay, enough background info. I didn't bother with it in the lovely lost post so why I felt compelled to include it now is beyond me. I'm too lazy to backspace, fuck it, it stays.
I duly considered casual sex, short-term dating, and long-term dating. Who's the lucky winner? Well, although I'd like to get lucky, I didn't indicate I was looking for casual sex. Inviting casual sex into my life would be like sending out an anonymous Dear John letter. Getting back into the dating world is like trying to find my way around without a map. I've never visited the particular territory of sex with no strings attached cos my moral compass was habitually set in the direction of 'forever after'. Stumbling into the undiscovered realm of strictly sex would mean I'd get lost for sure. A series of casualties would be the result and I'll be damned if I'll apologize for incidental damages like accidental neediness.
I'm not ready for an LTR (Long Term Relationship) and I'm not willing to lead somone on to believe otherwise. I've got the right qualities for it but my inner landscape is inhospitable to the idea of 'giving myself away' to someone again. I'm almost concerned I'm turning into one of those cynical bastards I love to hate, but any of the guys I get to know invariably describe me as sweet, caring, and other effusive nonsense so although I thought my heart might finally have shrunk from 3 sizes too big to a black, withered thing like some stone cold asshole might have in his chest, apparently my ticker is still working overtime.
I need to avoid the pitfall of sticking around because the other person likes me a lot. I've pulled that dumbass maneouvre more than I care to admit. If you don't know what I'm talking about, congratulations you're a mature human being who can clearly communicate uncomfortable feelings. I default to an LTR when my feelings are lukewarm at best and my compassion is at its worst. It's not fair to anyone because that guy becomes the second chance dance partner which is a horrific discovery for someone to make. Hence the need for an expiration date.
To me, short term dating is smack dab in the middle of the spectrum of physical and emotional interest. It's a way of saying 'I might fuck you if I like you'. This way, if someone is more interested in sex, they can be let go in the same way they were let in. Easy comes, easy goes, as it were. There's nothing wrong with someone being mostly interested in sex for sex's sake, but I'd get bored if it was primarily a poke-a-hole thing. Alternatively, if someone wants more commitment, I could politely excuse myself from further entanglement. Again, I've got no problem if someone is looking for a life partner, but I'm not in a good place for it right now. The trick is to be able to stick to this blueprint IRL. I had a clever reflection about the futility of having a plan when the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry which seems timely enough considering the fate of the former post.
How can you predict the unpredictable? Whenever two human beings interact there are bound to be unexpected discoveries. Check in again to see how this strategy translates IRL as I get to know the three bachelors mentioned in another post. The road to hell is paved with good intentions so I wonder how far I'll get down purgatory lane... .