Sunday, May 09, 2010

Trying Too Hard

A month or so ago, I was introduced to a gentleman through a mutual friend. He and I hit it off pretty well in a friendly context - some commonalities that aren't every day were discovered and it seemed like there was potential for a nice friendship.

I hadn't talked to him since that day of our first meeting in the coffee shop other than the occasional random FB comments but I looked forward to seeing him again.

Recently, the opportunity arose to visit with him again during a cocktail party thrown by the friend who introduced us.

I greeted him warmly - as warmly as I greeted most others as they arrived - giving him a hug and telling him how nice it was to see him.

Our interactions throughout the early part of the evening were pleasant and I enjoyed listening to some of his stories.

But then...

The tides turned. I soon realized he was following me about the house. I would excuse myself to refresh my drink, go to the bathroom, speak to someone else, and I would find that he had followed me, was hovering about me.

He began to take certain liberties...putting his hands in my hair, touching my leg, kissing my neck.

I began to be alarmed by the amount of alcohol he was consuming...not because he was out drinking us all but because he wasn't handling it very well.

When he told me he wanted to kiss me, I put my foot down and said no.

When he tried to grab and hold onto my hand, I told him no.

When he followed me outside and tried again to put his hands in my hair and pull me toward him, I told him no.

By then, I was actually pretty pissed off.

And it wasn't that I was upset by his continued unwanted drunken advances. I mean, it was annoying, sure. But I'm also quite capable of handling myself under those circumstances and knew that I still had several weapons in my arsenal of fending him off - including but not limited to venomous tongue lashings.


I was more angry about the fact that while, yes, I am involved in an open relationship, he is more than fully aware of that relationship and yet it never occurred to him that perhaps his advances were inappropriate and disrespectful to that relationship given the circumstances.

There is, I believe, a misperception that open relationships require less respect than monogamous ones.

What I mean is that I think some people believe that an open relationship is basically like being friends with other words, single. And overt sexual advances are always fair game.

But that's just not true.

Most open relationships I know about have ground rules. The polite, responsible thing to do when approaching someone one is interested in when that someone is known to be involved in an open relationship is to ask questions about those ground rules.

Just as we do when approaching someone we find attractive without having met them before, don't we nearly always establish whether that person is available for our advances quite early on?

Same thing really.

And while it's quite possible this gentleman had inquired about those ground rules from my partner, it certainly would have been most appropriate from him to talk with me about them as well before salivating all over me and trying to dominate my attentions so that I was unable to fully enjoy the company of some others I rarely see.

Alas, I do have to take some responsibility for the situation because, at first, I didn't fully realize or appreciate that his flirtations weren't as innocuous as I believed.

Once I became aware of how uncomfortable I was though, I retreated, regrouped, and then asserted my lack of interest for the evening...a few times.

He finally got the hint.

Perhaps he will apologize to me and we can move forward from here.

If not, no skin off the proverbial nose.

One thing is certain, I'm less likely and interested in further encounters...especially when he's consuming alcohol.

Because really? Dude, you're trying too hard.

And if you knew me at all? You would totally know I do not, under any circumstances, like to feel cornered or smothered.

1 comment:

zero hour said...

queasyfying to be sure ...