UPDATED version Monday June 12, 2017 <3 LSH
Late 2015, after writing a handful of autobiographical erotic stories, Lauren sets out for some deep soul searching on what on earth she’s doing dating a married man.
The Virgin Diaries
100 Days of dating myself.
day 1 Lawyer
The dating profile of a forty-seven year old self-assured lawyer seemed to leave me with only one option. To sign up as a full member to tell him that he had opened my eyes. The deceivingly casual tone of his online profile revealed an intimate insight into his psyche that I only knew from one other person. Me.
This was a heavyweight psychological dating site. Everyone had gone through extensive testing, and all profiles were manually checked. Every line you altered ditto. And profiles were only visible to those who matched your internal make-up.
The site was a sanctuary for all those tired of being selected, or dismissed, on their looks. Although I’m pretty sure most people can see through the blur and still make a decent assessment. Especially if someone was black with a full head of hair and smart enough to look sideways and down. An elegant pose that suggested shyness if it wasn’t for the fact that shy people freeze up in the strangest of poses if you point a camera at them.
The lawyer was not shy, but suave.
He was playing nice so you would understand he did not reply, or wasn’t able to make it. That he did not call after sex. That you wouldn’t take it personal that he wasn’t able to cope with anything that bore the characteristics of a relationship. It wasn’t you, it was him.
The other profiles looked pale compared to his. They didn’t answer questions in three different ways as if reasoning with himself. Only to then cheerfully declare:
“I still haven’t nailed this one!”
They didn’t say they would never want to suffer “unless it would make them understand themselves better”. They did not wish that they could stop projecting themselves onto others. They had professions like: Controller. Entrepreneur. Empty. Disabled. They had the same score on compatibility as the lawyer or even higher.
“I don’t like snobs,” Mister 109 compatibility stated.
Someone who even notices snobs clearly doesn’t have the unwavering self-esteem necessary to face me.
“It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice,” Mister 108 compatibility reasoned. Sounds like someone justifying not having a purpose in life.
“I like passionate sex,” photographer 107 compatibility announced and I could feel my cunt cramp up in disgust. I was not going to pay three hundred fifty euro to be repulsed.
Because that turned out to be the amount I would have to pay. Give or take. It depended if you paid per month or for the whole year.
Three hundred fifty euro was an awful lot of money to connect with my male twin soul. Especially since the insight he had given me didn’t require his presence anymore. I didn’t really want a man. I really didn’t.
I too, was done projecting. I wanted to be my own Plan B. Grow my own backbone, and be my own best friend, and lover.
And dating myself was completely free.
day 2 The Sex Guru
It all started with a new and free ebook from sex guru Layla Martin, Epic Sex, on how to deepen your sexual connection in six arousing ways. I was struck by the four pages written especially for the male partner. They explained that a woman will get emotional during good sex and how to embrace that.
I realized that if it required four pages to talk him into this, then no man was going to give me that unless he was The One. I would never experience those six ways of groundbreaking sex and intimacy unless I would find Him. And that’s when I remembered I still had this other course from Layla Martin to help me achieve that. A free video training on how to attract your dream partner.
I had started this training but had dropped out when you were asked to make a list of non-negotiable qualities of your dream partner.
“He is honest. You absolutely need that. He is totally devoted to you. You need that.”
But Layla’s two supposedly no-brainers sparked so much resistance in me that I just couldn’t get my head around forming my own opinion on this. But now I was motivated to give it another go. I needed a dream partner after all.
I had always known exactly what I wanted. Yet every date, boyfriend or fantastic lover had failed to understand me. What I wanted was to really like each other, be equally excited to have found each other and from there be with each other all the time. Where “be with each other” would roughly translate as to screw the living daylights out of each other. After a few months you would know what to do. Break-up or stay together and try those other five ways to have sex from Layla’s book.
But my dates never understood that. The combination of diving in and experiencing total alchemy and yet at the same time not making any future plans, was something that blew their minds.
One man said he didn’t want to invest if we didn’t have a re-la-tion-ship.
Two were holding out because they still had a partner. Three were hand-picked for sexual strength yet we had no match in other areas. The rest of them were bedded for other reasons, such as companionship or curiosity.
Eight years later I’m back full circle. I still want the same thing. But now I know why those men never wanted to dive in with me. Because female emotions and connection scare the shit out of them. He isn’t going to walk through the fire of real intimacy not knowing you’re going to be there on the other side to take care of his burns. Burns that in his mind, might never fully heal.
Even if you make that promise, take the vow to be there for him till the end of time, it will still take four pages and a super hot sex therapist before he will even consider real intimacy.
No wonder my lovers pretended they didn’t understand what I was asking for.
day 3 Mister Right
I made a list of Mr.Right’s must-have qualities and my cherry-on-top desires. I ignored the standard requirements of honesty and “totally committed to you”. Maybe those virtues were important to teacher Layla Martin, or maybe they were simply different words for things I did want, but honesty and commitment caused a numb dead feeling as if my Mr.Right was doing something against his will. Or because God made him. Or because he was afraid I would leave him if he kept things from me. My ideal man didn’t play by anybody’s rules. He didn’t let me, nor God, dictate him how to behave. Honesty and commitment were probably legitimate wishes for other women, but for me they were traits to look for in a dog.
Which doesn’t mean that I don’t possess them. I do. I have zero capacity of lying, conspiring or doing anything behind anybody’s back. I’m honest to the point most people would find rude or offending. And I’m committed to the point that freaks out most partners because they think it means I’m making wedding plans. I’m not. I hate weddings so much I wouldn’t even attend my own. Commitment and honesty are a part of me like my blue grey eyes. I’m so loyal that if I’m having coffee with two different guys in the same week, I already feel I’m working against my Golden Retriever nature, and insist on telling them both. I carry enough honesty and commitment to make any relationship work, and then I still have spare.
After I had convinced myself to only list qualities that mattered to me personally, and not what mattered to someone else, I got to work.
My non-negotiable list for Mister Right
1. The sexual attraction is so strong it could set fire to a forest in monsoon
2. He is single, separated or divorced and is in no case secretive about us dating
3. He is sexually dominant
4. He’s not into leather or S&M
5. He loves, loves, loves to play, role-play, power-play, any-play. With me of course.
6. He can cook. No packages, jars or pre-fab seasoning mixes allowed.
7. He is moderate in his drinking, doesn’t smoke nor does he do any drugs.
8. He has a consistent workout routine
9. He is super excited to be dating me
10. He showers at least once a day and always wears fresh clothes
11. He keeps his pubic hair in check
12. And his house and personal belongings too. He’s organized without being anal. If he uses coasters to prevent marks from the glass on the table then that’s a deal breaker right there.
13. He fully accepts me.
My cherry-on-top desires for Mister Right
1. He’s not more than 10 years older or younger than I am.
2. He likes cats
3. He prefers women over 35
4. He has a dad bod or one a little more cuddly
5. He has a strikingly beautiful penis
6. Smooth body with naturally little hair
7. He lives nearby
After making this detailed description of my future partner I was to get myself into a heightened state of awareness. And I was to visualize him when I masturbated. But instead of masturbating for an orgasm, diving deep into the pleasure pit of my darkest fantasies, self-pleasuring (as it was now called) was going to be a classy high-quality form of masturbation, to match the sensual love making you desired. For as long as it would take me to draw Mister Right into my life, I was to exclusively masturbate with him in mind.
My imaginary Mister Right spooned up behind me, and nuzzled my hair sighing he was so happy to have me in his arms again. He pressed his sturdy torso to my back and his dick greeted my bum.
“You smell so nice,” Mister Right sighed, as if it was the very first time he noticed.
“I always leave the sheets on after you leave.”
Something started to dawn on me. Not only that these were not sexual fantasies, but something else. I was very familiar with this husky, masculine voice and with this disarmingly cuddly body. One flicker in his voice, a few well-chosen words, and he would set fire between my thighs. One swift sweep taking my panties down and I would press my hips to him. One groan God you’re wet already, and I would spread my legs.
The man I was summoning into my life, with all sexual magical powers I could muster, wasn’t a truthful and committed dream partner. It wasn’t my own happily available, non-secretive Mister Right. The man spooning up to me was the electrifying, the dominant, the will-cook, does-shave, owns fairly clean and tidy penthouse, Mister Big. And the only commitment he ever made was a lie-filled marriage.
And not to me.
day 4 Becoming Big
Online dating is a powerful tool. It consumes ALL your time. If you thought social media were addictive, you haven’t tried this heroin among the internet addictions. Online dating triggers your mental reward center for being liked, for being popular, and for being in a game. At the same time it leans towards falling in love, developing crushes and sex. It is a feast of projection, an intoxicating set of stimuli that will block out about eighty percent of your connection with your real social life. Which meant it would reduce my Mr.Big addiction to twenty percent of its original strength.
The perspective to lose myself, and the best part of my Mr.Big addiction, to online dating was appealing. I could already see myself getting up hurriedly every morning, checking my mail before breakfast or even feeding the cat. I would waste at least two hours a day browsing new profiles, revisiting favorites, writing messages. But the lawyer made me see I didn’t truly desire him, nor any man from that site. My deepest desire wasn’t even to have Mr. Big. It was a lot more bold. I wanted to be him.
I reread my list of non-negotiable qualities of a Mister Right. They were all traits I desired for myself. If I invested in myself what I was on the verge of investing in finding my dream partner, the pay-off could be off the charts. It was an opportunity to tackle every problem that had been bothering me for the last decade.
I only had one problem.
The minute I had refrained from signing up for that dating site, I had freed up the hours of time. Up to five hours a day. So I knew I had the time.
But contrary to browsing profiles and dating, personal transformation was a pretty meaty task. You never heard of anyone being addicted to being alone improving themselves.
Which meant that in order to become my own Mister Big, I had to make it addictive.
day 5 Trickster
An addictive brain is one of the most powerful human assets, if not the most powerful. It is dangerous, toxic, and it will backfire on your mental health, physical health and your social life. But if I can make myself addicted to becoming Mrs. B. I know I will succeed.
And I will worry about the detox later.
These blog posts you are reading, The Virgin Diaries, they are my drugs. It takes a minimum of two hours to set them up. Then there is the rest, the “junkie behavior”. This includes the irrepressible urge to rewrite, refine, post, refine again, throughout the rest of the day. The next morning, I find even more errors. Mostly English words I’m not using correctly. I fix them and update the post, hoping the early readers missed them. Then I start writing the new post for the next day, and the whole cycle starts again. By the time the draft is ready it’s way in the afternoon, I’m still in my morning gear – a hoodie reminding me I originally intended to exercise – and none of my worldly tasks are done.
As long as my fuel, my online writing, is claiming four to five hours, there is no time left to become more successful at life. If anything, I run the risk of becoming less successful as I am actually cutting corners in my work as a yoga teacher.
This blog is keeping me accountable, and it has kept me from signing up with Parship, saving me three hundred fifty euro and a life-sucking online addiction. But my writing is still all raw energy, all consuming. In order to become the financially thriving, daily exercising, glorifying Mrs. B, the powerful beast of my writing needs to be tamed, trained and put to use.
And kept on a very tight leash.
day 6 Plan B
I gave myself one day to kick-start my new identity of becoming Mrs. B. And a permission slip to focus on the main stuff. The complete list of consistent habits to be implemented, new skills to be learned, failed plans to be fixed, and life-long frustrations to be dealt with, was extensive and intimidating. I would start with the things I could list right away. And even that could mean I was already in way over my head. I have a weak memory, but everything I wanted to do but didn’t, every good resolution I made and then dropped, and every hundred day challenge I failed within a day, all seems to be stocked in the front, tumbling out immediately. When it comes to reminding me of failure my mind is inconveniently accurate.
I focused on my three biggest frustrations, eh, I mean Mrs. B’s three biggest goals.
1. to be financially successful
2. to have a consistent workout routine
3. to keep house and body in check
The last one was the easiest. I had well-functioning routines in place for laundry, doing the dishes, and changing my sheets, but from now vacuuming, waxing my legs and keeping the bathroom clean would also get an official spot in my planning. And I would buy orchids for my bedroom and living. It was a matter of fine tuning.
The second one was kind of half-way. I’m a yoga teacher so four days out of seven I get a workout already. But my home practice was non-existent.
The first one was the hardest: financial success. In a few years the number of active yoga teachers had more than doubled, prices had marginalized and the new colleagues (and some of the older ones) had finally found their way to online advertising. My online competition had quadrupled. On top of everything my website was practically unfindable and despite implementing three different solutions to get it up in the search results, the only available path seemed to rebuild the whole thing with software and hosting that were far less user-friendly than what I had now.
My company had been quietly sliding downhill. But suddenly I was in a hurry to save it. I was now Mrs. B. and we were not going to let this slip through our fingers. I was going to save myself.
day 7 Cold Turkey
The good news was, it worked.
I sparked countless initiatives to get my business back on track. Opened an open study group for colleagues and other yoga devotees, ordered a door sign, rewrote the website, upgraded my Google Adwords and drew up a schedule of what to post when, and exactly on which social media. Especially for my yoga blogposts and online classes. No point creating something authentic and then not properly putting it out there in the world.
I investigated a yoga training that I had dropped out of. They offered a link to graduates on their website. There were zero graduates where I lived, so that would give me a competitive advantage as well as boost my website higher in search results. Completing that yoga training and getting that certificate would be my priority for my company. I estimated that would take me twenty-five hours of study.
On workdays my writing addiction would be pacified with a yoga blog. The weekends were to completely indulge in this blog The Virgin Diaries. At least that was the plan. The non-functioning, failing part of my plan. Because the urge to write recreationally did not get passed by so easily. I worked like a maniac, yet I still wrote hours every day. So even though I had done all my real work saving my yoga studio, I had still been ten fingers deep into my writing. Didn’t do a workout. Didn’t cook. Ate pizza. Barely slept. After a week I was a wreck. A behind-her-desk-before-breakfast doing-ever-more-writing wreck. With a tooth ache, a headache, and a bad conscience.
My plan to use my addictive behavior to actually become high-functioning in the first place, was as effective as it was destructive. It was supposed to be a hundred day challenge. Not a one week guide to getting a burn-out.
Still in Cortisol overdrive I made a dentist appointment, took a pain killer, and reviewed my options.
The weekends would have to be cleared of writing after all. And of work. It would be this mini-detox where I would refrain from all bad habits that disturbed my mental peace.
My phone buzzed. A Whatsapp message.
“How is my Baby Bee doing?”
It was Mr. Big.
day 8 Fail
Mr.Big and me were on a three month break. My call. When dating him, I had changed from a blushing, healthy woman, to one whose hair was falling out, whose breasts were painful and whose menstruation had become fuzzy. It was preceded by a substance that I remembered from when I was on the pill. Sticky brown to blackish stuff that didn’t even make an effort to look like blood. And now, six weeks totally Biggie-free, I had changed again. I was now an overworked woman whose hair was still falling out, whose breasts were still painful, with a pending root canal treatment, and exactly one blood-free week in her entire cycle.
“Baby Bee” as Big always lovingly called me, was not doing well.
All my efforts to heal myself and claim my life back, had gotten me nowhere when it came to my health.
“Biggiieeee!” I wrote back.
“Where are you? I miss you.”
My last tampon had come out almost clean. God knew how little time I had this month. If Big was in the country I wanted sex. Six weeks without him, had done more damage than the last six months with him. And they were certainly a lot less fun.
As expected Big refused to be pinned down to a date. He was probably doing a preliminary warm-up, so that if he had time between his obligations I would be more than willing to see him. It made me sick that I put up with that, didn’t go look for a man for myself. Self-loathing always surrounded our dates. I never blamed him for wanting to be the pretend-faithful living-apart husband, or the fake-devoted father to his children, or for giving me as little as possible.
I envied it.
He was a professional when it came to optimizing profits, calculating risks, and client confidentiality. I once asked him if he had told friends that he had a secret mistress.
“Of course not,” he said.
“Although your writing makes me wish I could tell someone. It’s like I won a gold medal for sex.”
“I read you got a new job.” I texted.
“You’re into finance now?” he replied with a smiley.
“I Google you when I miss you.” I confessed.
“Do you like London?”
“It’s what I’ve always done. Just busier.”
Hello thousandth rationalization for not having time for me. Yet I was disgusted with myself for letting him get away with it. And even more repulsed for wanting him more badly than ever.
This blog, The Virgin Diaries, was all about standing in my own power and becoming a female Mr.Big. An independent successful woman.
Yet one text, one Google search, or rereading one erotic story, and I was back to being a needy clingy amoeba.
And a very horny one.
day 9 Nerve
Consulting the dentist didn’t exactly work miracles for my self-esteem. I’ve always considered myself a fearful patient. Or fearful anything, basically. From yoga teacher, to cat mother, to mistress. But it is only at the dentist office where this seems to be receiving special attention. I find that ironic, since a dental treatment is one of the few things you have good reason to be scared about.
Ten years ago, I selected my dentist because she worked around the corner where she was a junior in a firm of cooperative dentists. But she moved out recently, and now has her own practice with her own website. It says she is good with fearful patients. Maybe that is why over the years I built up quite some confidence in the dental chair. I still fear needles, and usually for good reason. After some quite unpleasant encounters with cavities-deeper-than-expected and infection-lessening-the-effect-of-Novacane I’ve learned to always insist on the ones they use to extract whole teeth. That’s the ones that hurt.
But aside from pain and needles, more than anything, I fear having nitrogen cold cotton wool stick pushed to my teeth to inspect if my nerves are either dying or still in order.
One tooth at a time.
It was a diagnostic tool which, as I suddenly remembered after today’s incidents with the substitute dentist, my dentist had offered once to inspect the same tooth I was in for today. She dropped the proposal so quietly and friendly that I had completely forgotten about it. Whereas today will be vividly remembered.
I wasn’t scared of going to the substitute dentist because my last experience with my own dentist, to get a filling replaced, had been strangely empowering. The injection of the anesthetic, as in the moment she pressed the actual liquid in, gave a violent electrical shock to the front of my jaw. I screamed and tried to wriggle away with the needle still in me and the area stayed sore for a week. Nevertheless the appointment was a pleasant experience. We laughed about fucking up this injection.
“You’ll probably become one of those patients who exist only on paper,” she said.
And then sent me out to do some shopping. She knew I liked to give it thirty minutes to settle in, so it would be at maximum strength.
The substitute dentist put me in a chair that resembled a backwards slide, with my head lower than the rest of my body. He asked what was wrong, started inspecting the by me suspected area of infection, at which he called out “Caries.” to the assistant. With the location number of the tooth.
“You can put that in the computer.”
It was like he was studying military maps of Syria, since I had apparently no right to be informed on his findings. This impression was affirmed when he moved on to the teeth of the bottom jaw without telling me what he was doing. Or why. He then started tapping my teeth with the back of his instrument. Again without any notice, until he tapped a tooth that hurt.
“I’m tapping your teeth,” he said.
Something I was well aware off.
“That’s my crown right?” I asked.
Starting to get slightly irritated that he was inspecting an area that I had not asked him anything about.
“Yes, that’s the only tooth that is giving a reaction.”
“I know,” I repeated.
“I had a double apex there and a root canal. It hurts if you tap it. Don’t tap it.”
He pretended to laugh and went to work on the other side of my mouth. Other as in one hundred eighty degrees opposite to the side of my face that was hurting. Here too he tapped all the teeth. There was a switch of instruments, and suddenly I got an ice cold freeze on my tooth. The only thing positive was that this was actually the side he was supposed to be working on. I totally freaked out shrieking;
“Oh my God!!!”
And he said: “I’m using a cold cotton wool stick.”
Again, information Syria would have liked to know beforehand. To threaten back with death, torture and decapitation.
“I know!” I yelled.
“I had no idea we were at that already!”
Meanwhile I thought it a little childish of myself that I was so freaked out over this cold-thing. Maybe I was overreacting. Somewhere between getting out of the chair, and back in, and opening my mouth, and then closing it, and finally calling it a day, and hearing him out, I heard the remarks:
“I think we should proceed.”
“I think it’s really brave you try it again.”
“Maybe if we do it really quickly.”
“This is the best method.”
“Let’s make a photo.”
In that line, the photo seemed like a good idea.
I was standing near the computer staring at the photo. At least I was straight-up, and it appeared he had given up on his ice-torture diagnostic path. But the photo puzzled me because it was from all the teeth, up and down. He hammered on about the poor condition of the bottom tooth. The fact that it had been operated on twice was a sure sign it was trouble. And the pins of the filling were poorly set. And look, there were the two cavities on the top jaw that he was going to fill.
“You’re not filling anything,” I said.
“And where is the photo of the root?”
“It’s so much better to do a diagnosis with the cold stick. Sometimes you can’t see the infection on the photo of the root.”
“But we don’t have a photo of the root,” I repeated.
“No, but if we do the diagnoses with the stick I think we can leave out the photo. You don’t need it.”
“How much is an extra photo?”
“You tried to torture me over fourteen euros!”
He kept gabbling on about radiation that was unhealthy and yada yada yada. I thanked him for his time and left. Still not understanding how he had managed to make me feel bad about myself. And even bad about my dentist who I absolutely adored. But he had spotted the caries, and she had not.
But then I decided I didn’t care. I would stand by her. Because even though she had missed a cavity, she had never, in that entire decade, looked passed me.
day 10 Happy
I remember a tv show where a man, supposedly an expert on the subject, invited the host, audience and viewers, to think of a moment they were happy. And my mind stayed completely blank. I knew what happy felt like, but it was impossible to find a single memory connected to it.
The expert then predicted that this moment we had in mind, would be shared with others, that we would have accomplished something and a third thing that I forgot. But that didn’t seem to do ring a bell either.
My moments of happiness are when I’m alone, when my floor is vacuumed, my bathroom clean, when I have the entire weekend for reading or studying.
And I am definitely an expert on that.
day 11 Yoga
Self-practice. I always found that an erotic word. Probably because it reminded me of self-pleasuring. A neutral word like self-study also had that alluring ring to it.
Self-practice. Self-pleasure. Self-study.
I instinctively understood that being so intimate with oneself, either physically or mentally, gave the practitioner the advantage of no longer projecting, but reflecting. To not reach out, but to delve in.
My study of self and pleasuring of self, had been consistent. If they stopped I would naturally pick it up again by starting a new blog, by writing in my diary or by indulging in masturbation during daytime, when I was not as tired as at night, and didn’t have a cat insisting I would lay still so he could use my naked body as a pillow or mattress. Self-reflecting and self-pleasuring were second nature to me. But a consistent self-practice, which meant doing yoga other than taking a class or in my case other than teaching a class, that was an entirely different story. At least for the last decade.
It was tempting to say it was because of a power yoga teacher training. There was a before, in which I was a beginning hatha yoga teacher and had a daily practice. And there was an after, where I now had a double teacher qualification, and was so fed up with the mandatory home practice of the training, that I avoided my mat for months. Being held accountable for how much yoga I did at home had been an effective way to knock all the fun out of it.
In theory there were other ways of “doing” yoga than just yoga exercises. Meditation was one. But also how you lived off the mat. Self-study even, was one of yoga’s strongest paths. It wasn’t like I had been running around like a yogic villain or if I had behaved particularly unethical. It was just that I had not managed to restore my home practice to the same level as before that training.
But there was a fair chance that my home practice would have slipped anyway. Because I had started teaching more classes, and all that yoga just went straight into my body, decreasing the longing for yoga at home. It was just like the five star cook who didn’t cook at home and the competent psychiatrist whose children go off track. And those adjectives were of course subjective. Maybe they were lousy cooks and discharged therapists. That was probably what I feared most. That my lack of home practice was a sign I was a bad teacher.
But I had other worries now. My health. My hormones were causing havoc and unless I was fine with three week periods and hair loss rushing me straight to menopause, yoga was my best option. Yoga in a narrow definition as physical exercises.
Over the years I had designed several series for women, based on extensive research. So I collected them, printed, drew sticky-women dolls representing poses, and bound the sheets into a booklet. It was time to self-practice.
Self-study and self-pleasure were no longer going to cover it.
day 12 Big Insight
People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
Pitiful. Pathetic. Disgusting.
The judgement I felt for dating a married man was a merciless stream of negativity. It had been when I saw it happening to other women, and now my hatred had turned towards myself. Dating a married man was a dead ringer for having little self-esteem, and for giving your power away. It was boo-hoo he won’t leave his wife. No bitch, of course not.
Who would leave his handpicked elegant wife for someone who has apparently so little self-worth you would have to build a nano-laboratory and assign three scientists to find it?
Unless you intended to date a married man to use and abuse him, teach him a lesson while getting off along the way, you could not claim having a backbone and dating a married man at the same time.
But my ruthless self-hatred was not the whole story. It was just my ratio that said that. Or my ego. It was all up in the head, not in the heart. I didn’t feel insecure or unworthy in general, just when friends or self-help gurus said I should want an available man. Or when I thought of all the nice things we could do, if he was mine. Those were the times I wanted a single man. But only a single Big.
I had always admired his ability to maximize profits in his personal life, just like he did for his clients. Of course it was unethical, but it also showed he did not need approval from other people and that he fully trusted himself. He estimated how much was in it for him. If it was worth the risk he would do it. And if things turned sour, he would charm, buy, and trick himself out of it, like he always did.
It wasn’t just my admiration for Mr.Big’s cunning ways that gave away that hatred and judgement played a marginal part in our relationship. It was something else too. Something so obvious I wondered why it took me so long to see this: Mr.Big made me feel great. And vice versa. We celebrated each other like Bonnie and Clyde.
In the past, the moment I had been unable to admire a man anymore, I knew my place was no longer there with him. And men who had commented on who I was, or what they didn’t like, I never dated them in the first place.
Because I didn’t do arguments. I didn’t do drama. I didn’t do: you need to change.
I only did “let’s only see the good in each other”.
A promise Mister Big had always kept.
day 13 The Professor
It was a hotel I had been to once, about twenty years ago. To take a stroll through the woods surrounding the golf course and have tea at the sunbathed terrace. But the trees were naked now, and a watery sun was already fading, even though it was only 5 p.m. A blueish mist crept over the golf course.
My graduation process had not been exceptionally memorable, although my professor had saved my thesis and my will to live on several occasions. Usually in conjunction. We had never stopped seeing each other. Once every two years minimum, we would catch up.
“I ended my career,” I said when I became a yoga teacher.
“I ended my marriage,” he’d answer.
“I got a new one,” I continued.
“So do I,” he confirmed.
He was always amazed that I could recall in detail what the state of his love life was last time we saw each other. Who did what. Who betrayed who. What the stakes were, and what the irreconcilable differences.
“You have such good memory! Did you take notes the last time?” he asked.
No I didn’t. I only wrote things down if there was a good chance I would forgot them. Like the name of someone’s first-born after five years of trying to get pregnant.
The professor had never been at the country estate with the mansion like hotel. Although he had heard it was heaven for the rich and famous. And unaffordable for the rest.
It had not been easy to get there, using public transportation and a taxi. For three days my only program was to go for walks, to pick up my yoga practice, and to distance myself from the passionate wish that Mr.Big would finally choose for me. That Mister Big would propose to me. Or that Mister Big would clear his calendar and join me for a short night to make intimate love to me. Or fuck me hard. I had not decided there. But since it was highly unlikely he would come it didn’t matter.
“So you’re on a break?” the professor asked.
“Two nights,” I answered.
“I hired a professional caretaker for my cat. I think he will be alright sleeping alone.”
“But will you be?” the professor asked.
The fetus position with my forever-baby-cat cuddled up under the blankets to my warm belly, had become ingrained.
I ordered more wine.
The professor knew about Big, because he read my blog. I told him the pivotal moment of Big and me. It was when I had not given in yet, and explained to Big I resisted because he was a player, and was going to break my heart.
“Yet when I got home I thought:
Wait a minute Lauren!
You’ve been single for eight years and you’ve given it your all. Love and sex have been your top priority. And then life finally hands you a worthy partner, and then you’re all like boo hoo Mr.Big is so mean?
Get back in there; right now!”
“And this is probably inappropriate: but can you believe the excitement if you’re in bed with someone who is experienced? That you don’t have to go meet someone at their level, where they still have all these issues and fears. That you’re both good to go. It’s like Maslow’s pyramid, but with sex. We were both ready for that small triangle at the top.”
The professor understood immediately. And he was pleased that despite changing careers, I was still using Maslow’s pyramid.
day 14 Utopia
I met the Archaeologist two years ago, when I volunteered to excavate at a site that had my interest. He was a vigorous rangy fifty-something, who decisively managed the chaotic bunch of us. We went for drinks a year later, I can’t really remember the occasion. And he became the only friend with whom I had politically, and historically, charged conversations. I always thought I could keep our dates contained to three hours. But we needed five. And we needed wine, bitterballen, sensitive subjects and complex problems, that I could analyze in one blunt one-liner. And then he would accuse me of using historic shortcuts, but always had something interesting to add.
We were somewhere on our third Chardonnay and I had already given an explanation why the biggest socialist party is currently in death struggle. That went back to the protestant reformation.
If you first throw out all hedonism and mysticism of the Catholics and a few hundred years later you throw out God and Jesus, you have nothing but an empty vessel striving for equal rights for workers. The Archaeologist added that there were equal rights for workers now, so that its ideology had become quaint.
I had slayed democracy and referendums. Having elections every four years already bore a fair chance a dictator would rise to power. So then don’t make matters worse by taking polls in between.
“After all when they asked the people who should be crucified, they chose Jesus, ” I said.
And the Archaeologist answered:
“But the people were deceived.”
“As they always will be. That’s why you should not ask them.”
The next topic was how the invention of vaccines had caused overpopulation in the middle-east. At ten-children-per-household the population had grown explosively, causing massive unemployment.
“And there are few things more dangerous than men who don’t have anything to do. Especially if you put them together.”
Our final conversation was after five wine.
I suggested immigrants should get an option to live in a new to be build city. A true Utopia. The Archaeologist explained there already was a blueprint, the city of Auroville in Southern India. Founded in the late 60′s for a good part by American intellectuals.
“Maybe they can rebuild the antiquities that IS destroyed. Like an archaeological Disney Land that everybody can come visit.”
And who knew. Maybe in five hundred years, on a chilly Saturday morning, a rangy archaeologist would put a messy bunch of volunteers to work to dig it all up again.
A Virgin Start, erotic story
I was two weeks into my blogging and life challenge, The Virgin Diaries, 100 days of dating myself. Aside from a consistent feed of one post a day, I had accomplished astonishingly little of what I had planned. Daily yoga, minimize social media and email, writing daily yet without binging. It was non-existent, still abundant and erratic.
The only thing I had achieved, aside from this blog, had been to keep my house clean, my beauty regime consistent, and I had put my company back on track. Only to then throw myself headfirst in a holiday week with out-of-office alibi on my mail. I didn’t do anything even remotely productive. But now I had to get back to work and was determined to give this “dating myself” thing a second go.
I wanted a virgin start.
Until Mister Big called.
This would be our first date with the new me. In full appreciation of what we had. I would never mention the W word and the D word again. Maybe my new attitude, you may even call it a virgin attitude, explained why our love making was exceptionally passionate.
First we went on a proper date.
He was looking sharp as ever. His full head of hair, black and slightly longer than usual.
Drinks. Something to eat. Jokes, catching up, candid conversation. I confessed I had been one credit card click away from starting to date other men, and mentioned the self-reflective lawyer. The profile that had almost made me click, pay, and take my chances as a single woman.
“There were a couple of reasons I didn’t do it,” I explained.
“One of them is that I am curious what is going on inside your head. I can only see glimpses of it. You’re like this oyster. I’m sure there’s a pearl in there.”
“I seriously doubt that,” Big said.
Certain themes seemed to be recurring in his life.
“Like my fear of commitment. I know that’s an issue.”
My jaw dropped.
“You know you’re scared of commitment?”
I had assumed his whole marriage hoax had managed to delude even him.
“Of course I know that,” he said.
“And why. General idea anyway. I will tell you one day.”
“See. That’s your pearl.”
“No. It’s not beautiful in any way.”
He frowned and looked defensive.
“You’re just like a troll, sitting on its treasure,” I laughed.
“No! You can’t have it!”
Mister Big sighed.
“You know the more you press this, the longer it will take before I tell you.”
“Oh my God, that’s solid gold you’re sitting on.”
So maybe it was because we had shared that mental intimacy. Or because I was the new me. Or maybe because, as I realized later, his apartment had been comfortably warm. But either way we started kissing. Or I started kissing, the moment he took my coat in the hallway. He responded but then delayed it. He offered tea, his warm and tidy bedroom, and asked me for the dvd.
I always shiver at the thought of how fickle my sexuality is. If he had pushed too hard, had undressed me and taken me immediately, I probably would have lost the desire for sex. At least temporary. If the bedroom had been ice cold or messy? Same thing. Looking back at our dates I always appreciate Mister Big even more. It allows me to pinpoint those moments that could have easily gone wrong. And I would have had to ignore it, get over it, or I don’t know…use some lube I guess.
We settled on the bed, still clothed just the shoes off, and he placed the dvd in his laptop. I had found the resemblance between him and Michael Madsen striking, and this was the first time Mr.Big would consciously watch his counterpart.
“I promised the kids I’d take them hunting,” Mister Big impersonated the husky Madsen.
Even their voices were similar.
“He’s in finance here,” I said.
“He’s more you than you are you. I watched it four, five times.”
“You watched it, or you masturbated to it?” a wicked grin on his movie star face.
“Both?” I grinned back and pulled my nose up.
“There is this part where he announces he will handcuff her in the cabinet. And fuck her hard. You have a cabinet.”
I nodded in the direction a small light room. It had been raided when he moved out to live with his wife. It could have made a study, baby room, or walk-in wardrobe, but it had its entrance in the kitchen.
“You fancy that? Handcuffs?”
I shook my head.
“But the cabinet could be a doctor’s office!”
Mister Big nodded in appreciation.
“It’s close to the kitchen. I could transfer some equipment.”
We laughed and started to think of suitable appliances. Even joking about it was fueling the fantasy.
Big and me always had these fantasies. Or I had them, and in the first half year he had fulfilled two of them. Anal sex (“Done properly!” I always added) and a rape fantasy. Which he had passed with flying colors. After that, for reasons I’m still not a hundred percent sure of, it stopped. My most likely explanation is that part of me (and a fairly large part) had expected him to choose for me. And when he still didn’t do that, not even after the sex had brought us together so powerfully, I realized he wouldn’t.
And the sex came at a price. After his five star porn performances, there had been days of silence, grumpiness, break-up. So now we only used the remaining fantasies as fiction. To just let the thought spice things up, instead of playing it out. It took the drama and the neediness out of me and stabilized our affair.
Like I wrote earlier, our love making was particularly passionate that day. We had started making out in the hallway, then I had this double candy experience when I had Michael Madsen on screen and a real life Big next to me. And I had been doing this exercise where you learn to masturbate on your dream partner, where I couldn’t think of anyone else but Big. I had been masturbating on him for weeks. No wonder it would get so good.
We started by kissing fully clothed. I have always loved that. It reminds me of teenage sex. One of the things I never liked as an adult, was to have sex from out of the blue because you’re both in bed. Or kiss and cuddle downstairs, and then go to the bedroom where we would undress ourselves, and lie in bed waiting for the other. I always wanted to start as teenagers. Playful. Hungry. Insatiable.
When we had just started dating, Big and me had complimented each other on sexual skill. I on his virility, which I could only compare to the strength of two black lovers I had. And Big had complimented me on my blow jobs. And those were condomized. Especially in the beginning. Maybe that was why I had been uncertain he had meant it. Similarly, he had been unsure about me complimenting him. He thought his penis was okay, but he had never attributed any special powers to it.
“I’ve been around the block,” I assured him.
“So I know what I’m talking about.”
“Well I’ve been around the block too,” he answered.
“And I’m telling your blow jobs are magic.”
We decided this was ridiculous and that it was safe to assume a compliment was genuine.
Big was always clumsy undressing me. He couldn’t find how to unbuckle my belt, my watch would get stuck in the sleeve, not to mention finding my bra fastener.
“For someone who has been around the block I would have expected a little more routine,” I had teased more than once.
He always replied:
“Some people would find that cute.”
Maybe it turned me on. The reference to some people. Although one of the few things Big had to promise was to never tell me with how many women he slept. I didn’t need to know how many some people had had their belt clumsily unbuckled by him. Or maybe still had, I didn’t rule anything out.
The movie kept playing as we started to make love. It seemed so long ago. His body and mine responded, the skin-to-skin magic that had often surprised me. There had been few men with whom I had this chemistry. He rubbed my clitoris, finding exactly that ridge that I use when I masturbate. Since I was five. I have never bothered with clitoral orgasms when I was with a man. No one could beat me at my own game. But this time Big was spot on, and gave me a clitoral orgasm. And cuddles and recovery time. I took it to penetration, taking a condom and joking that we sure didn’t need extra lubrication.
I strode on top, with my knees pressing violently into his sides with every Oh God. Lifting my pussy up, from the inside. Squeezing him, milking him, but more than anything: making myself come. It was like Anais Nin said in one of the first books I read from her:
“I climax so much easier with my legs together, but Henry always wants them spread wide so he can look.”
My Henry did too. And so did I. But sitting there, climaxing by pressing and squeezing everything, I realized what I usually missed out on.
Again recovery time. I don’t remember why I suddenly took on the prostitute role, just that I did, and I said:
“Because you made me come, you can ask for extra. Ask anything you want. Do anything you want.”
“Take it in your mouth.”
He stood by the bed and I sat on the edge and took him in my mouth, and dear God, yes I know, it’s face rape. So fucking what. Please, yes.
And I was fucked relentlessly. Doggy style with me on the bed and him standing behind me. It hurt so much I thought several times I wouldn’t be able to take it. But then I thought of another six weeks without him. Or who knew how long. And I could feel the tears coming.
“Can you feel I’m abusing you?”
He had quickly understood that I liked words, and that his voice was the biggest aphrodisiac in the room. It was the ultimate proof I was in love with him, although I never told him that. That husky voice creating intimacy, expressing desire, and pushing for a full submission in a porn like fashion.
“It’s okay. Come lie down.”
The voice said honey sweet. Maybe I had groaned too hard, or expressed how much it hurt. The last time we had been together Big had been completely gentle, taking me in different positions but never too deep. I had asked him about it, and it turned out Big knew when he was giving pleasure, pain, or gambling in that risky area in between.
We laid down and he wrapped his arms around me. Cuddling me, asking me if I was okay. And I enjoyed that moment, which was probably the closest thing to love he would be able to give me. After rough sex we often had this haze of “My God did we do that?”
Only to then discuss it and get excited all over again.
“Come sit on top of me.”
It sounded friendly.
I took the same position as before, with my knees in the mattrass on either side of his body. And lowered myself over his dick. A sigh of relief, to have him in me again, and I leaned forward. He wrapped his arms around me, and as I started to move I felt a finger pressing my anus. I gave an appreciative groan, and gasped in surprise as I felt it going in, even though that was ridiculous since I could have known that’s what he would do.
I didn’t say no.
Not even when it went in further and it hurt me.
I didn’t object to the sharp pain, and even searched for a slow and steady rhythm so that he could predict my movement, and wouldn’t slip out. The build up from my orgasm, deep inside my pelvis, had started yet again. It was as if every cell in my body was in anxious anticipation, and I heard myself stammer Please don’t stop. The finger went deeper and he repositioned himself under my clingy full body wrap, to get a better reach. I squeaked when he pushed a second finger in.
I still didn’t dare to move my hips faster, but didn’t have a choice. I had to. That climax was right within reach and stalling it with this relentless sharp yet totally gratifying pain, wasn’t an option. I would not be able to take this for much longer. As I moved quicker, he managed to stay in. Both ways. And at some point I forgot about him, about the pain, about having the closest thing to a double penetration I ever had in my life. And that Big was acting out another fantasy that I had told him so often.
I didn’t realize that. Not then.
Just that when I stopped moving, and Big’s fingers slid out, that my first words after I had caught my breath were:
“I can’t believe the control you have over your orgasm.”
He smiled and kissed me.
Then he said “Ow!”
And laughed: “Don’t squeeze!”
I looked at him puzzled. Since when didn’t he like me squeezing his dick with my pussy?
“It’s a little sensitive now,” he explained.
“What? You mean you came?” his dick was still rock hard.
“Yes. I told you when it happened.”
I shook my head in disbelief.
“I didn’t hear it. Nothing. I was so wrapped up in myself.”
I held his penis at the condom ridge, lifted off of him, and snuggled up on his chest, receiving his embrace. I still couldn’t believe he had actually climaxed the exact moment I had.
“Now I am even more impressed how well you control your orgasm.”
There was a hesitant silence and then he spoke in a clear voice.
day 30 Catch 22
This is the final post, hereby prematurely ending The Virgin Diaries; 100 days of dating myself by LS Harteveld
My friend Ivy defined it a Catch 22 for me; a paradox.
If I wanted to keep writing autobiographically, I could never have a normal relationship.
This blog is a two sided sword. It celebrates what a man has with me, yet it is a constant reminder not to screw me over. It has the power to please and to paralyze. To seduce and to manipulate.
My blog is like a super power. I can both claim and recreate reality. Ivy was right. The blog is a threat to having a balanced relationship. And yet, even though I was closer than ever to getting the relationship I wanted, I didn’t know if I was ready to give up writing. I was kind of attached to playing God with the pen. And besides: wasn’t I entitled to have defenses? The men I liked were not exactly beacons of safety.
First Biggie. My main man and clandestine lover Big was still married. Few people knew he was doing a terrific job occupying my heart and everything further South as well. When I had started dating Big I had said to him:
“With you, I’m dating in The Major League.”
And not without being totally terrified. But I was holding up. And the only reason I was still playing (instead of being heart broken and degraded) was because my blog was doing its job of defining the truth, remarkably well. It was an exceptionally valuable tool when it came to coping with Big who, like most Major League players, depended on hiding his emotions and concealing the truth. I had never gotten a single I love you. And yet it had become unimaginable another man would ever touch me again. At least it had been until Mister X entered the game.
Now Mister X, to whom I swore secrecy to never write about this turn of events, was equally unclear about the state of his current relationship as well as anything else he had going on the side. It was vague enough to include a whole harem.
Mister X was the first serious competition Big was getting. It was the first time I could see my whole body, mind and soul, breaking free from being cornered by Mister Big.
Contrary to Big, Mister X had made it clear that none of our interaction could go on record. Not the part where I tried to find out how significant his other still was. Not the part where I desperately tried to push away my feelings for him, claiming he wasn’t “fair”. We were fascinated with each other.
The first part of the paradox had been that if I wanted a normal relationship, I needed to stop writing about it. The second part was that the type of men I fancied, were far from normal and I would need my writing. To keep myself sane, and cope with all my emotions.
Besides, I wasn’t dating baby koalas. I was dating men at the top of their sexual game and playing to win. And Mister X had negotiated I could not use my blog, my main weapon. But despite the spooky incantation of his name (Mister X?!) and his demand to stay anonymous, Mister X was less scary than Mister Big. And there was a sexual tension, an emotional connection, and we shared similarities in background. That is the maximum of what I can reveal, but there were more signs he could be The One.
Between sure signs Big would choose for me, and then tending to my wounded ego when Big retreated, Ivy warned me that my cuts were getting deeper every time. She was heavily in favor of Mister X. Although she probably favored the whole alphabet over Mister Big.
I joined Ivy to some hotshot gathering. A festive thing. By the time I got there the official program was over, everybody was in some state of being drunk, and food was scarce. Ivy said it was always like this.
“The other meetings are fine. But this is an annual fuck up.”
She couldn’t understand which caterer was put in charge.
I didn’t expect to see Big there. He would either still be in London or with his wife. And Ivy said she had not seen him anymore since we had started dating.
“I guess he was never here for his clients in the first place,” she concluded.
Ivy didn’t like him. They were never introduced, but it was a small world, and Ivy immediately regretted taking me to the New Year’s party when she had witnessed me and Big being drawn to each other like magnets.
She told me everything bad she knew about him. Including a crooked business deal that had damaged his reputation. And she pointed out two women with whom he had more than likely slept. But it was all in vain. I was into him, and she had dutifully listened to all my sex adventures and emotional despair ever since. She had even given Biggie the benefit of the doubt on more than one occasion, and had been a supportive friend. Although probably one with grinding teeth.
A Catch 22 means a paradox.
You can’t solve it.
But Ivy and I had found a loop hole.
As long as things were not serious, as in someone bringing a ring and going down on his knees proposing something along the lines of till death do us part, I didn’t have to choose between X and Big. I’m not enthusiastic about dating multiple men. But I agreed with Ivy to first collect, then select.
Mister Big was stalling his divorce hoping that he could block it till the youngest was eighteen. At least, that’s what I suspected the plan was. And Mister X was a player too. I expected them both to be strong enough to handle competition. By dating two men there was something in it for both. I was meeting Mr. X’s request for privacy. And Mister Big could stop feeling guilty for not providing for me emotionally. For not choosing for me.
If I had two partners, one I could write about and one I could not, I would be surprisingly close to a balanced love life. I had gone from a Catch 22, to a Catch 2.
High on the prospect of becoming a queen bee, I profusely thanked Ivy and made my way out. That’s when I ran into Big. An undeniably drunk, surprisingly courteous and unapologetically happy to see me, Mister Big. We were next to a bar near the wardrobe, where they had just brought in some food. The low hallway was noisy, crowded, and cramped. It smelled like old men’s sweat and deep fried food. Mister Big and I spent ten minutes shouting in each other’s ear, conquering snacks and grinning at each other like idiots.
I considered running into Big a good omen.
Good omen being an understatement. I saw it as a sign God existed and that she had been listening to everything me and Ivy discussed and was now throwing a boon at my feet. The fact that Big was drunk only added to the fantasy that this spontaneous encounter was a gift for me. Not for him. He would probably not be able to remember much of it. He had a disarming straightforwardness that I had never seen before. I realized how reserved he had been.
We went to his penthouse. We had to walk for half an hour because he was no longer able to cycle responsibly. I enjoyed the one on one time, especially in his new compliant mental state. As if he had been shooting up on truth serum.
He could barely find the keyhole and for a moment I was afraid he would set off the alarm because he appeared to have forgotten the code. The house was a mess and we snuggled up on the couch. I lay on top of him. A freshly pressed shirt. I remember this because I thought it was remarkable that he was as spotless clean and nicely smelling as ever. What followed was something that I can only describe as ten months’ worth of intimacy, poured over me at once. And ten months’ worth of tears sprinkling back on top of him. I had been holding back my sorrow, with the same stubbornness he had been hiding his feelings.
I got about a thousand I love yous, including the first ever. And he asked if I really, genuinely, thought we could have a real relationship.
“The real thing. Nothing halfway.”
With our gaze connected – in my recollection we spent two hours looking into each other’s eyes- he gave me a glimpse straight into his soul as my tears just kept coming and my sobs were making it difficult to speak. I nodded.
It will work out. It will work out, and it is the only thing that will. Because I’m the one. And you’re the one. And you can deny it, but that doesn’t change it.
I spoke from the heart, not the mind. And the heart said I was right. Despite his alcohol-facilitated openness there was one thing he didn’t talk about: Her. Every time we brushed on the subject of why he was still with her, he said:
“You don’t know the whole story.”
“I’m not defending myself, but you don’t know the whole story.”
He said it without hostility, in a loving way. At least I learned there even was a story. Aside from the fact that he still had feelings for her, which I had guessed pretty early on, there apparently had been something else. And that something was probably a reason to cheat, but not a reason to leave her. For all I knew it could be a reason to stay. And regardless of everything he had done, regardless of how much alcohol he had had, he was loyal to her. In his own way.
That’s when I knew he would forget most of what happened or what he had felt. His feelings for me, symbolized by him as a King and a Queen, were opposite to his actions. He was still fighting to save his marriage. Or what was left of it.
Since that night, I try to understand what happened. Was the night a message? That he would never choose me? Was it a goodbye gift? I still don’t know. I try to estimate how much it would hurt if he would finalize things between us, just to see if I’m ready for it. But then I quickly retreat. Cross that bridge when we get there, and all that.
But I do know that whatever the future holds for me, it improved by having that night together.
We really were a King and a Queen. Even if our reign lasted only for one night.
The story continues in
Big Part 3, The Way of the Trickster