Dating is hard when you're married. I know that sounds like a "No, really?" statement but it's true for most free lovers and doubly true for me. It's not that I'm hard to get along with or that women don't find me attractive or interesting. I'm a big masculine guy and women who are interested in me love that but, it's usually my mind that attracts women to me. I think differently about everything and I'm not shy about sharing it. I don't have any racist, sexist or elitist tendencies and I always try to do what's right. So if my character and appearance are fine, what's the problem? Well I'm rather shy for one but that's not the biggest obstacle. It's that I'm already attached to my Angel, Elouise.
Now to be clear, I don't consider Elouise to be an obstacle to me dating other women. Quite the contrary actually as she actively encourages me to meet someone. It's that I'm often unsure of how other women in my town will react to a free loving couple. What happens often is I meet a woman I click with, usually at a bookstore or game store, we end up talking about nothing for hours and just enjoying each others time. I feel like things are going good so...I back off. The reason? There's a very good chance this awesome lady is monogamous or at the very least poly-intolerant. Sometimes if I'm unsure I'll ask directly "Have you ever heard of Polyamory?" and 7 times out of 10 I'll hear "Yea and it's disgusting. Having sex with all those people." The other three times they'll simply say "No." I'm not going to keep my Angel a secret like someone suggested once and I'm not going to lie to anyone (I have enough bad karma). If things get to a point where we are making plans to spend the day together I think she deserves to know I'm not single but not a cheater either. I mean when exactly is a good time to say "Oh and, little thing, I've been with someone for 12 years straight. Want to catch a movie?" That whole thing is awkward beyond words.
I've heard some advice that was equal parts brilliant and silly. "Don't date monos." Great. Problem solved! Let's have all poly people date other polys and that's that! Now what do monos look like so we can not approach them...? See the issue? Monogamous people don't wear a sign that says "I'm looking for my one and only," and even though free lovers (from now on I'll use that term. Poly sounds funny to me.) have a symbol of our status we seldom wear it. Identifying other free lovers just isn’t that easy, as much as I would like it to be.
|Maybe I should wear one of these.|
Also in my town (Hampton, VA is part of the bible belt) anything that isn't related to religion on some level is vilified to hell. This town will literally beat you over the head with "Gawd's wurd." There are churches all over the place. In fact I've mapped it. There is absolutely no way to get from my home to my job without passing a Christian church. I make this point because as many free lovers will tell you, church going folk, who apparently have Jesus' power of attorney, will condemn you for not being monogamous and heterosexual. Obviously not every religious person is like this but enough to make one nervous when coming out to a religious family member.
There's also one more big red flag for me and Elouise personally. Being African American. I don't want to elaborate on this particular issue to much (I might in a later post) but suffice it to say that in the black community it's generally frowned on to do anything considered "White" despite the ignorance of that statement.
So all of those factors combined with me being a big chicken have led me to be very reserved and taciturn when I'm out. Of course my Angel notices me checking out other women and has even gone so far as to ask them to come over and meet me. Which of course leads to this other woman to ask if she's my sister to which I reply "No. She's my wife." This leads to a whole dialogue tree ala Mass Effect with all roads ending in her walking away, her level of disgust the only variable.
All hope is not lost though. I plan on trying to actively date now that I have a forum to talk about it (thank you for reading this far by the way). Any advice or ideas would be very welcome. Maybe my next post will bring good news. Until then, Live and Love Freely.