Adventures in Polyamory

Since this January, I have been dating two amazing men, Josh and Pierre. I haven’t written about Pierre until now because he requested that I not discuss our relationship with anyone. I have decided that the best way to honour his wishes was to keep him out of the writings on my anonymous blog. I am a bit paranoid that way, perhaps, but so be it.

Pierre and I have a very special relationship. We understand each other in many ways, he is very supportive of my work, and there is a lot of kindness between us. Oh, and the sex is completely amazing. Until recently, we were only seeing each other on occasion.

When my apartment flooded, I ended up staying with Josh for the weekend, as I mentioned in an earlier post. During that weekend, Josh had been invited to a birthday party for one of his friends. He asked me along, letting me know that some people he was ‘currently connecting with’ would also be at the party, and that we would have to be less touchy with each other than we usually were. I agreed.

I saw Pierre at the party. He was there with a woman I would later learn to be his other lover (although I suspected at the time). We embraced, and I told him I wanted to see him very soon, once things in my life settled down a bit. He asked me if I was pursuing a relationship with Josh. I said that yes we were dating.

“Ok,” he said. “I’m going to step back and give you the space to explore your relationship with him.”

I would have articulated at that moment that I wanted him to stay in my life and I wanted to pursue both relationships, but I was not at my best, since my place had just flooded. I was mainly at the party because I was staying at Josh’s place that weekend and I didn’t want to be the killjoy who squatted in his apartment while he went to the party alone and felt bad about not entertaining me. So I just watched Pierre walk away, feeling choked up, touched, and overwhelmed.

A few days later, Josh and I debriefed about our feelings about the party. He told me that he felt weird about being more ‘hands-off’ with me. He told me that he has a lot of feelings for me, but that he doesn’t discuss his love life with his friends, but he’s fine with me talking about our relationship with others. I was impressed by his honesty, and, oddly comforted that he doesn’t expect exclusivity. That was around the time that I told him about my job, which didn’t phase him.

Later, Pierre contacted me and told me that he wished me happiness with Josh, and that he would be here if I decided I wanted to spend time with him again. I responded by sending him an email saying that what I have with Josh in no way negates what I have with Pierre.

Josh was away that weekend on business. I texted Pierre, and he replied to say that he was sick in bed. I asked if he needed anything. I came over and brought him food. We ate, cuddled, and reconnected. It felt good to be there with him. Since then, Pierre and I have been spending a lot of time together.

Last week, Pierre told me that he no longer requires me to keep our relationship confidential. He suggested I tell Josh before he finds out through the grapevine, which I agreed to do. It’s tricky. Josh has told me that he prefers to keep his lovers compartmentalized. I get the feeling that I am the one he’s most interested in (though perhaps that is wishful thinking). I was the one he spent Valentine’s Day with. I have been spending every Friday night with him, and he makes me breakfast on Saturday. I have started to really like that couple-feeling groove we’ve been getting into. I have also felt like I shouldn’t get too comfy with it, because I still have questions I would like answered. We’ve talked about polyamory, and we both know that we are not exclusive. Still, he has mentioned how competitive guys can be, and I wonder how much of that is his own observations of himself. I will have to initiate this discussion, and it’s hard.

To make matters even more complicated, I met someone fabulous on Sunday who is completely smitten with me. I am intrigued by him and am planning to see him this Friday. This invites more conflict, because I have been seeing Josh on Fridays… but now I wonder if perhaps I should be less available. I am starting to fall into the temptation to play games rather than be honest and open, and I must resist this urge. I will have to have that sit-down discussion with Josh soon, and trust me, it’s the last thing I want to do at the moment!

Why I Don’t Have A Sugar Daddy

Last week, I had a very enjoyable session with a client. There was chemistry between us, and our sexual tastes matched up nicely. He was pleasingly kinky and I enjoyed bending him over the bed and violating his ass with my strap-on in front of a full-length mirror. We had some pleasant conversation after. He was older, insecure about his weight since an injury had impeded his ability to work out. He was a wealthy business owner. I left feeling happy, especially since I had had a really unpleasant experience the night before (which I will blog about later… not in the mood right now). Sometimes a good client can turn the tide and help me feel good about my work again.

So, when this client booked me again last night, I was very pleased. I walked into his apartment and gave him a big hug and a kiss. He was drunk, and apologizing for his state. He offered me a glass of wine and said that he just wanted to talk this time. I said that was fine, and we started talking.

He told me that he didn’t usually like to hire escorts because he finds those experiences generally impersonal. He said that it felt different with me, and that he wanted to make me an offer. He had just broken up with his girlfriend that day and he was in a bad mood.

“Well, sweetie, just so you know, I am not girlfriend material. I make a great companion, but a terrible girlfriend.”

“I just want a companion. I want someone to travel with me, someone to love me.”

He proceeded to offer me an apartment, all expenses paid, fifteen hundred dollars a week on top of that, just to be his ‘girlfriend.’ I explained to him that I enjoy my life as it is, and that I don’t want anyone to be able to control me financially. I told him that the agency works for me because I go home and my life is mine, my money is mine. I pay my own rent. The sex I engage in with clients is clearly defined as a service provided. I don’t depend on any one person for my livelihood.

He asked me to consider it, and I said that we could discuss and negotiate something when he was sober.

The second hour was spent mostly in the bedroom. I enjoyed myself, even though he was drunk, he was still fun in bed. After that, he went on and on about how beautiful I am, how much he wants me to love him, how he doesn’t want it to be about the money, how he would buy me anything I want, how money was all he had to offer. I felt compassion for him in that moment… he needed love. And he didn’t feel loveable. And here I was, the courtesan, capable of love, but fiercely independent, and unwilling to live my life according to someone else’s script. I was someone’s wife once. When I left him, I swore never again to let a man control me.

We started fooling around on the couch. By now, he was stupidly drunk and I was looking forward to leaving. I hate being around people who are completely wasted. Finally, I got my phone call from the agency, and I had to go. I got dressed amidst his rantings that I was ‘leaving him’ and that I ‘obviously didn’t care about him.’

“Sweetie, I have to go or else I put my job in jeopardy. You understand that, don’t you?”

“Whatever. Just go! You obviously don’t give a fuck!”

Finally, I got pissed off. Who did this jackass think he was? He had absolutely no idea what it is like to be me, a woman who didn’t come from a rich family, who had no career to fall back on when her marriage ended, and turned to sex work because she possessed erotic powers and the will to survive and maintain her independence, who saw it as both a calling and a survival skill… Was compassion too much to expect from him? Why did I care?

“Well,” I said, “If you choose to take my having to go that way, that’s your choice.”

As I rushed out of the apartment he had promised to me mere moments before, I applauded the wisdom of my decision not to accept his offer. After all, being completely dependent on a man who’s mood could change on a whim, which, in my experience, describes a lot of men, is a scary proposition. They are drawn to my liberated sexuality, my open sensuality, my fiery free spirited nature. And, when they get closer to me, they do all they can to shut that part of me down, to build walls, to claim me as a piece of property. Exceptions made for men who are polyamorous or simply secure in themselves, of course. My unwillingness to drop everything in my life, my weekend plans, my classes, my other lovers, my volunteer and social justice activist commitments, on his whim, seemed to send him into a rage. Imagine how awful my life would be had I accepted? A life within a gilded cage is no life at all. Better to be a whore.

Grace in Troubled Times

A couple weeks ago, I caught a nasty flu bug. I don’t usually get sick, but this was nasty. I actually, literally lost my voice. Josh came over and took care of me during the worst of it. It was difficult for me to let him see me sick. I am quite vain, I will admit it. It’s hard for me to let a lover see me without certain trappings. With Josh, I am generally all made up and wearing beautiful lingerie. I enjoy the preparations for our dates, and I find dressing up deeply erotic. So when he offered to come over and bring me food when I was sick, I was very nervous. I had dirty dishes in the sink, hadn’t showered and was wearing old pajamas. I know that following my divorce, I kept my lovers at a safe emotional distance in order to keep myself from being hurt again, and I don’t want to continue that pattern. So I let him come over and take care of me. It was a beautiful experience to be cared for by a lover when I was ill. He was so kind and warm and accepting of me, even without the trappings and the glitz. 

 A week later, I was starting to feel better, but still dealing with a lingering cough. Chris was in town, and she wanted to get together for coffee to talk. Always tough after a breakup, but the talk went well, and, although difficult, was very cathartic for me. I got home around midnight.

That day, I had been having plumbing problems, which I had been trying to remedy with a mixture of plunging and baking soda and vinegar. Nothing was working. I was going to call my landlord in the morning if the toilet still wasn’t working. Of course, by morning, my place was flooding. I put all my art work up on my dresser and desk and called the landlord and let him know what was going on. Pretty soon, my cat and I were taking refuge on my futon watching the water rise to six inches. I was texting Josh, who was supposed to come over for a romantic evening, and letting him know that, due to flooding, we may have to change our plans for the night. He cheered me up with text messages joking about being stuck on a bed with nothing but a water dish, a bowl of cat food and a cat, who must be looking very tasty at this point. I texted back that the cat is my family and she would be safe until dinner time. 

 My landlords arrived, and of course, my place is full of sexual instruction books and thigh high boots and other such trappings of unrepentant whoredom. Thankfully I had my strap-on and dildoes hidden in my nightstand, but I often just have those lying around too. Thank god I had done my dishes, but jaysus, it was awkward. I haven’t disclosed the nature of my profession to my landlords, and I am in no hurry to do so. I’m proud of my work, but it is so heavily stigmatized, and the last thing I need is for them to scrutinize me for traces of drug addiction and illicit activities on the rental property. I pushed those thoughts aside as they combed through my house. After all, they can’t evict me for having sex books and thigh high boots. The suite above mine was vacant, and the new tenants were not moving in until Sunday. They offered the vacant suite for me to stay in while they fixed the suite. So the cat and I went upstairs and I spent the day lying on the floor with a pillow and blanket, napping and cuddling with the cat. It was very sweet. I felt gratitude for having a roof over my head, and that my cat and I were safe. It was my day to volunteer, but I called them and told them what happened, and they, of course, told me not to worry about coming in. My supervisor invited me to stay at her house. Then my Tantric teacher invited me to stay at his place. Then John texted and invited the cat and I to stay at his place. He said he would come and get me as soon as he was finished work. I accepted, thinking that it sucked that he would have to see me unsexy again, but very comforted by his offer. 

 He came to get me and gave me a big hug. It was the first time I was at his apartment. He cooked me dinner, and we spent the rest of the evening in bed having mind-blowing sex. Actually, we had mind-blowing sex before and after dinner. All in all, it was the perfect remedy for a crazy day of natural disasters. 

 The next day, we started talking. Of course, we’re both very interested in sexuality, and that is a big part of our relationship, so that’s what we talked about for a lot of the day. I told him about my experiences with a local tantric masseur I hired a couple of times for an erotic massage. He listened to me describe my experience with great interest and admiration. Then he mentioned that he had considered doing that work himself. I encouraged him to pursue it, saying that we need more people dedicated to working with people around their sexuality. That seemed the perfect time to tell him about my work. We were both lying on the couch on opposite ends, facing each other. 

 “That’s the sort of work I do,” I said. 

“What do you do?”

“I am a sacred prostitute. I help people work through their sexual issues and explore their sexuality. I do a lot of kinky stuff, primarily domination, as well as regular stuff.” 

 He nodded, seeming completely unfazed by this information. 

 Over the weekend, I realized that my disclosing the nature of my work actually brought us closer. Although he had never promised exclusivity, he was more open with me at this point about his other lovers. I had always assumed he had others, but hadn’t been that eager to find out… not because it would bother me, but because I didn’t consider it any of my business unless he wanted to tell me. Knowing that he has others takes a lot of pressure off of me. I know that he will not expect monogamy from me, which is comforting.   I felt myself falling for him a little more that weekend. 

 It was a risk to tell him while I was out of a place to stay, but it seemed right, and it turned out very well. Since then, I have grown much more comfortable in this relationship. I don’t know what form it will take over the next several months, but I am very grateful to have this wonderful man in my life. In fact, that weekend, as my apartment flooded, I felt such gratitude for everyone who offered assistance. I have a strong community. I am loved. I am valued. It is deeply fulfilling to know that there are people in my life who will care for me even when I am messy, bedraggled, and my life is a disaster. 

 As for the flood, there was no damage to any of my belongings. The suite has been repaired. My landlords are impressed by how calm I was and how nice I was to them while the water was rising. I still have a place to live. Sometimes these messy moments in time bring us closer to the people in our lives and give us surprising but ever so valuable insight.