So what of the love lives of us single people during a time of social distancing and an uncertain future? When the advantages of a freewheeling sex life are suddenly on lock down, my thoughts on what I want from my relationships are coming into focus.
You don’t even have to take a crash course from an expert, such as one of those ball-searching, Speedo-wearing Italian hunks you encounter on the lido, whose hands dive into their budgie-smugglers and check their two veg every couple of minutes while they’re talking to you, like it’s the most normal thing in the world to do. You can do it in the privacy of your own bedroom or bathroom
Once through menopause, it’s the first time in an adult woman’s life when she’s no longer plagued by uterine cramps, migraines, menstrual blood heavier than a severed artery, or the inexplicable desire and ability to devour a pound-sized bag of M&M’s. Until then, give her some love.
Lying together tangled hot in damp sheets, the world disappears. Tempests could roar, civilisations could crumble, and we would be oblivious, entwined and in our own universe. It is as if the natural light in the room does not come through the window but simply from within us. The warm glow of two souls enraptured. He taught me my body and I think I taught him his. The first time we enjoyed each other, he opened me like a flower emerges from bud. I had never been touched in such a way before. In such a way that my breath caught in my chest and my head swam. He doesn’t talk so much as murmur. He murmurs to my skin, to my tongue, to my folds. It feels soft. Sometimes it is warm, then it is cool, and the sounds he makes hum against the epidermis. Hairs on my skin rise up as if applauding his expertise. His expert tease.
Feeling rejection proof has served me well in my dating life, a world rife with fickleness, ghosting and boy-men who still haven’t figured out why their marriages failed. But there was a downside to always asking for what I wanted: a myopic view of the world through my own lenses without accounting for how my delightful assertiveness might be affecting the experience of another.
He had shown up in the crosshairs of what many attribute to the long-established, perhaps evolutionary predisposition for people to look for a mate to shag over the long, dark days of winter. A few thousand years ago it would have been called survival. Today, it’s called The Cuffing Season.
Perhaps our relative safety within organized society, and the fact that most of us aren’t constantly on guard for predators or foraging for enough food to survive, has resulted in prolonged and varied lovemaking not available to other species .
Could more than one partner provide the extra lovin’ I needed to feel more securely attached in love? Or were polyamorists already so damn secure they were naturally good at loving multiple people and I would fail miserably?
I want to be with a man who’s like an engaging book; a real page turner, one I can’t put down because he’s bringing up thoughts and ideas that challenge and delight me.