A divorced dad puts himself on the market and starts to feel like an ad on Craigslist.
Upbeat and optimistic dad of two middle-school kids, seeks pleasant and easy-going woman for casual and romantic evenings. Looking for an extraordinary woman in need of service and support. I’m touch-oriented. I thrive on honest and open communication. I’m over playing any mind games, and am looking for a steady relationship.
I didn’t really mean for this to be a personal ad. Let’s cut to the chase.
I’m a former husband and a current father. I am more focused on my kids than on my own relationship status, and for the moment, that’s how I believe it should be. I do have time in my schedule to accommodate a relationship, and now that I’ve gotten my act a little more together, I’m putting our a few feelers again. I’d like a relationship. I thrive in proximity to a nurturing and active woman. In fact, I expand creatively when I have some sexual chemistry in my life. Oh, what wonderful things that chemistry does to our souls.
In relationship I tend to think less about myself. Or, to put it another way, I spend a good bit of time thinking about, imagining, writing poetry, singing, in response to the growing warmth in my heart. I’m a hopeful romantic. I know the right romance is yet to come. I got close in marriage number two. And perhaps now, with a good bit of recovery time in between, I’m re-centered and ready.
Perhaps, I say, because I also enjoy my seemingly limitless alone time. When I’m in a creative mode the “off” evenings seem like a gift. I would’ve had a hard time negotiating a single evening off to go into my music studio before the kids went to bed. So I worked creatively at night between 10:30 and 2:30 a.m. Any wonder I was a bit tired as the corporate work routine wore on, and my double-lit candle began to burn perilously close to meeting at the center? I was inspired and yet constrained. As a family man, as a fully engaged father, it was okay. But my creative drive was suffering under the time constraints.
Of course as a single man on a regular schedule with my kids, I go into some weekends knowing I have five nights in a row with minimal obligations. I could set up some activities to keep me busy, but I’m over that period of my recovery. Now I see the juicy potential of that time and I am jumping into those nights with a euphoria that will be hard to give up, when a relationship re-grounds my flight. I’m looking forward to that, but it will be a change.
Already I had a moment of awareness when the last date nearly turned into a girlfriend over a three-day period of romantic, lusty, courtship. (See She Came On Like a Freight Train – The Woman Who Says “Yes”) She bailed out. And though she gave me some reason, I’m not sure it wasn’t just her “holy shit what if this happens” moment. She too was highly creative and a full-time single parent, with little or no support from her ex. That’s a scary place to be, I’m sure. But when she was pouring on the fuel in the first two days of our “dating” I began to not only get ramped up romantically, to turn my evening attentions towards her and away from my creative projects.
That is a transition I want, mind you, but it came on so quickly with her, that I didn’t really have a chance to warm to the idea. In a day we met from a Tinder connection, and in the second day she was texting me alluring (non-sexual) photos. But she was in my head. She was changing the course of my week and we’d just met.
In the end, I think the derailment was more an indicator of her actual stability rather than the projection she was showing me. She did have an amazing effect on me. I was ready and willing to lay down all available nights in search of her sweet spot. And that too was an indication of how unrealistic I had become while basking in the light of such a white-hot romance. When the euphoric state hits too fast, I’ve learned that something is off. Kind of like the woman who got this amazingly glazed look in her eyes as we were making love. I thought she was blissed out. Turns out she was vaping pot in the bathroom just before sex. Um … No. (see My Casual Sex Experience – First Lesson)
Okay, so I got a big YES/NO and I’m a bit lonely at the moment. And by lonely I really mean hungry. I’m hungry for a woman, for that connection, for the scent, touch, taste, and imaginative rush that comes from being with someone who turns you one. And at the same time (this is not a cop out) I am willing to wait and work on myself, my physical fitness, my musical project that hits the stage on Dec. 5th, my own internal creative inspiration. I’m happy. I’m alone. And I’m dialing back the hunter-mode a bit.
When I’m not so aggressive about looking for an available woman, my entire body relaxes just a bit. Rather than hunting and pursuing, today I’m going to continue to refine my package. Sure, I’m flirty and aware of every breathing female in a 50-foot radius, but I’m content to appreciate and smile. When there’s a smile back, I’m also satisfied with that. I’d rather see if there are additional signals, additional indications that might illuminate some “mutual” attraction, without the forcefulness of approach and courtship.
One recent example. I was picking up my daughter from a new friend’s house. The mom was there and very attractive, and yes I noticed, not wearing a ring. She was playful and touched my arm a few times as she expressed herself. (Ah, my type, a touchy -feely person.) And yet, also not my type: she was just heading into her divorce. She was preparing the house for sale. And according to my daughter, she and the dad didn’t get along at all.
Quite a contrast from the rest of my daughter’s friends the weekend before when she said, “Everyone at the sleep over had divorced parents.” It’s becoming the norm. And at a 50% failure rate, you’re likely to have as many divorces as you have marriages.
So she was amazingly pretty and open. She was not exactly in my “type” mode, but she was wearing little or no makeup, and she was practical and happy to chat with me about our kids. She was reaching out to connect with me. And that was enough. I let the moment just be a nice moment. (Yes, I’ll admit I tried to get my daughter to give me some contact info so I could give her the martial arts instructor’s name.) And while I was revved up by her presence, I was also clear in one thing: divorces are hard and getting INTO a relationship as you’re getting OUT of your marriage is a terrible idea. I wasn’t going to stand-in for the maelstrom.
And so, I’ve been girlfriend-free since the end of the summer and it’s fine. I’d rather not be. But I’d rather be alone that coping with another person’s major emotional distress. I don’t need drama or high theater. And at the moment I “want” more than “need” a woman. Sure, I’m hungry for a mate, but I’m also aware that I’m hungry for an adventure at the same time.
Re-center, refocus on myself and my growth. My current mantra.
But I’m putting up the services available ads as a way to feel like I’m at least fishing for an amazing catch. I’m also enjoying the boat ride around this new pond of older single women.
The Off Parent
back to On Dating Again
- Reversing the Flow: Putting Women in Charge of Courtship
- Big 5 Relationship Questions to Answer Before You Start Dating Again
- She Came On Like a Freight Train – The Woman Who Says “Yes”
- My Casual Sex Experience – First Lesson
image: headless hunter, jd hancock, creative commons usage