The pros and cons of dating a detective

I’ve been going out with Andrew for a while now, and I thought I’d write about the good and bad points of shagging a detective.

Pro: he knows all the laws

On our third date, I said to him, “so, do you know, like, all the laws?”

He said that, at least when he was doing his police exams, he knew all the criminal laws.

Even in just a few months of dating, it’s already been really helpful.

When I thought Alex might have attempted suicide and I called the police, while I waited for news, I talked to Andrew. He said, “they’ll make it a priority and send someone round quickly.”

Afterwards, he told me about how the police would liaise with Alex’s mental health team.

I’ve already written a lot about how he helped me understand a police investigation from my past, that had a huge impact on my life.

One Saturday night, we were walking down the street, when he suddenly pulled me away from the edge of the kerb. I had barely registered that a scooter had just gone past, with two men on it.

“They’re trying to snatch people’s phones,” Andrew said.

Even in more chilled out circumstances, it’s helpful. A work colleague told me that it’s illegal, the way I drive using my phone as a sat nav, but I don’t have a proper holder for it, so I usually have it perched precariously, on top of my handbag, on the passenger seat.

This came up when we were driving to Dorset, and I said, “I know, it’s illegal…”

He said, “Actually, that alone is not illegal.”

Take that, work colleague.

Con: he can’t really break the law

One of the very first messages he sent me was about how he’d just been on a Speed Awareness course, so he obviously does break the law, but he can’t seriously break it.

One time, I told him in passing about how I’d been hanging out with a friend who had been smoking cannabis. He said that, if he’d been there, he would have felt uncomfortable.

Once, we sat a table outside a restaurant, and there was an empty cigarette packet on the table.

He picked it up and looked at it wistfully, and said, “I wish I smoked. It would make me look so much cooler!”

I said, “when we go to Dorset, why don’t we buy a packet of cigarettes and smoke them together, as a one-off!”

He said, “no, I couldn’t! I’d never forgive myself if I got addicted.”

“Ok, why don’t we take some MDMA together then?” I joked. “I think it’s less addictive.”

He laughed dizzily at the mere thought of it, then said, of course, he couldn’t, as he’s a policeman.

“Ok. If I still know you when you retire, that weekend, let’s get off our tits and have sex on MDMA.”

Pro: I just like saying, “he’s a DETECTIVE”

It sounds cool.

It is cool.

He solves crimes.

“The detective I’ve been seeing…”

“Oh, you know Andrew, my police detective…”

I can’t shoe-horn it into conversation enough.

One time he phoned me when he had a few spare minutes in court, but then said, “sorry, I need to go back in. The jury have a question.”

Not to mention when I get him to read my rights in bed.

Con: it’s not data analysis

Since I entered the dating game in 2016, I’ve learnt a lot about the range of careers my peers have.

Basically, every second person does data analysis of some description.

This never fails to amuse me, because, obviously, my blog is called Dater Analysis.

I’ve been on loads of dates and said, “so, you said your job is dater analysis…?” and done a hilarious side-eye to the imaginary camera.

Even if they’re just describing their role and mention 2 out of 3 of

  • MS Excel
  • Data
  • Analysing things

I would then say, “so, you could say, that your job involves dater analysis?”

Andrew analyses all kinds of things (CCTV features pretty highly) but he doesn’t really do data analysis.

He does, on the other hand, very thoroughly do Dater Analysis.

Pro: he does a job that really matters

I’m so proud of him because he does such a great job, and it matters. He investigates serious crimes, and supports the victims of crime.

Most of my boyfriends have had jobs that have no clear benefit on society (obviously that’s not quite how I phrased it to them as I handed them their packed lunch), and I’ve had at least one boyfriend whose job had a net negative impact on society.

Andrew is there at some of the most intense and distressing moments of people’s lives, when they’ve just been given bad news or experienced serious crime. He really gives a shit and does the best he can make things better for people.

I do a job that matters too, and it’s great talking to someone who gets it. When we’ve both been at work and talk about our days, sometimes mine has been more full on (“I did a reliving session with someone about their childhood sexual abuse, how was your day?”) and sometimes his has been more full on (“I’ve just come out of a crackhouse”).

When he’s been at work at the weekend, it seems a bit more full-on.

“How was your day?”

“We found a dead body in the Thames. How was yours?”

“I went shopping and bought some new bras.”

Con: no one in the police seems to have heard of work life balance

He’s always at work. He’s fucking always at work.

See every blog post I’ve written since I met him.

Pro: he’s calm when there’s a drama

Every big distressing life event you can imagine, he’s encountered through work, from suicide to rape, stabbings, people being attacked with hammers…

When I talked to him about what it was like to go back to my house after the fire, he’s the only person I’ve spoken to who has actually been to a house after a fire.

When I texted him saying, “they’ve found a shadow on my brother’s pancreas,” he texted back “I’ll call you in 10 minutes.”

Then, ten minutes later, he calmed me down.

When he told me about his secret, benign brain tumour, he was so calm and reassuring, it wasn’t until I was on my own, the next day, that I freaked out.

I wrote in a previous post about how zen he is about my menstrual blood, and a police officer commented that it’s probably that he’s good with blood and gore, because he’s a policeman.

He’s exactly who you want in a crisis.

Con: he’s calm when there’s a drama

Sometimes I’ve talked to him about things that are a really big deal to me, and he’s been slightly calmer than I would’ve liked.

When I told him I was sexually assaulted, he said, “OK.”

That was pretty much it.

When I asked a follow-up question about whether he thought I was damaged goods, he was reassuring and said, “no, it doesn’t affect how I see you at all.”

I think it didn’t seem like a big deal to him, because, as sexual assaults go, and he will have investigated a lot, it was pretty minor.

Also, I think as a police officer, being calm is probably always the right response.

As a therapist, I know sometimes my patients need me to be nonchalant and matter of fact, when they tell me something they’re embarrassed about or that they’ve really built up. However, other times, they need me to have a big, genuine reaction to something that is big.

Sometimes I say things like, “oh my god! I can’t believe it!” Or “I’m so angry that happened to you!”

When I told Balthazar about the sexual assault, he said, “I want to find the man and break him in half. No. I want to break him into 4. No, 8.”

I kind of preferred that reaction because it was closer to the size of the effect the incident had on me.

Another time, I was cooking dinner for us and sliced my thumb open while chopping an onion. Andrew was still on his way over, and I panicked as I’m not good with blood.

Eventually I managed to pull myself together and sort out the cut, and I was proud of myself for my bravery.

When Andrew arrived and I showed him my wound, he was underwhelmed. Admittedly, by this stage, it looked little more than a paper cut, but earlier, there had been blood gushing everywhere.

“I have given first aid to someone who’d been stabbed 9 times,” he said.

Piss off mate.

“Yes, but did they make you a delicious dinner?”

Con: he doesn’t have the uniform anymore, because he’s a detective

He does have handcuffs though. We haven’t used them, as he keeps assuring me that “apparently they’re very uncomfortable.”

Also, he’s lost the key.

Con: he’s always at work.

I may have already mentioned this.

Pro: he remembers everything I say

This might be partly because of his personality, and the way he’s just very interested in other people, but I would imagine his attention to detail also comes from his job.

One of the first times we met, I said, “someone at work came back today, after being on compassionate leave for a while.”

Ages later, I said, “I had a really good heart to heart with one of my work colleagues today.”

He said, “was it the person who was on compassionate leave?”

I really had to wreck my brains to try and remember who that was.

It makes me feel like I’m fascinating to him, that he remembers everything.

Strangely, it doesn’t extend to him remembering anything he’s told me. Sometimes he tells me the same thing about 25 times, with no memory of having told me before.

With one thing, I had to say, “In the nicest possible way, I don’t think I can cope with being told that information again.”

Con: I probably couldn’t lie to him

Luckily, in relationships, if anything, I’m too open. But if I did want to keep anything a secret from him, I wonder if he’d use his detective skills and find out.

I tried to do a Columbo on him once, when he refused to tell me how many women he’d slept with.

“Just one more thing… when you lost virginity, would you have been 22…?” but he wasn’t having any of it.

So far, the only thing I haven’t told him about is this blog.

Some of my friends, who know about the blog, have asked what I’m going to do about it, and the honest answer is that I don’t know.

Some friends have joked that, if he’s a detective, he probably knows about it already.

And the names and addresses of all the other men I’ve written about.

Con: if he wanted to murder me, he’d probably know how to get away with it

Fingers crossed it won’t come to this. Even if he does find out about this blog, and how many strangers across the globe have read about his tender balls.

But, I suppose, of all my boyfriends, if he wanted to murder me, he’d probably have the best shot at getting away with it, as he knows exactly how the police investigate crimes.

Luckily, this is the kind of thing I only think about when I’ve been watching too much Columbo.

7 thoughts on “The pros and cons of dating a detective

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