After my 3rd date with the Bearded South African Man, I felt unsure.
He was supposed to be cooking me dinner on Friday, but I was starting to have mixed feelings. On one hand, we had a lot of fun together, but lots of things on our 3rd date didn’t feel right.
Then, he didn’t text me for a few days, which was a bit unusual. We tended to be in touch every day. I wondered what was happening.
That Tuesday, I was driving into work when I finally got a text from him.
I waited until I was stuck at some red traffic lights, and read it.
“Morning. I think I’m going to have to postpone our Friday social session, I’m afraid. I’m going through some slightly confusing emotional landscape at the moment and I feel like I need a little time to work through that. I feel like we are maybe quite intense quite quickly and it’s caught me a little off guard. For both of our benefits I would hate to treat our time together as a distraction. I’m not sure that it is though: I had a genuinely great time eating pizza and talking about music, but as I say, it’s a confusing emotional landscape.”
And then: “I hope that makes some sense and is acceptable to you? I would be well up for meeting up once I’m back from my holiday if that could work for you?”
My initial reaction was relief, which surprised me.
I was surprised he said we got intense quickly – I wasn’t sure what he meant. To me it seemed like the most intense thing was when he talked about his mental health, and I hadn’t really encouraged that.
Other than that, as far as I knew we’d just hung out, had fun and had sex.
I thought it was annoying to send a message like that at 8:30am on a Tuesday morning. It was OK, because I wasn’t upset or disappointed, but I could easily have been, and right before starting a day’s work would not be ideal timing.
I was going to take the piss out of him for saying ’emotionally confusing landscape’ (twice!) but then I remembered I recently wrote a blog post called ‘the Emotional Portcullis’ so I can’t really talk.
“Hey, Thanks for being honest about how you’re feeling. I’m glad you’ve said this as I agree.
“Right before you very first texted me, I had said I was going to have some time off men and dating, because I’ve been really struggling with my feelings after a bad breakup.
“Then when you texted I was like ‘ok I’ll come out of sex retirement for that’.
Hanging out with you had given me a bit of hope about being happy again but I wasn’t sure if it was still too soon.
“We could see how we’re feeling after you get back?”
He said replied with amusement at ‘sex retirement’, and said
“I will continue to communicate (if that is acceptable) and we can definitely see how we feel in a few weeks.”
‘Continue to communicate if it is acceptable?’ Why is he talking like a robot again?
I assumed he was trying to wrap things up, with his emotionally confusing landscape, so I assumed that was the end of that.
I was surprised how OK I felt about it.
Then we exchanged a few messages before and during his holiday, which made it seem like maybe he does want things to continue after all.
Now I’ve realised I don’t want that, I’m trying not to seem too enthusiastic.
So, that Friday night, when I was supposed to be staying at his for the first time, I just stayed in, instead. I had a few drinks and watched TV with Joe.
The next morning, I woke up at about 5am after very painfully and dramatically getting my period.
As I got up to go to bathroom, I realised I was very glad this hadn’t happened at his place.
I think my period probably would’ve turned his bed into quite an emotionally confusing landscape.