I found myself in a precarious situation last night.
This had been building for quite some time, on and off. Basically innocent.
He was safe. Someone who I knew from a long time ago, didn’t really talk to much or pay attention to. We became facebook friends and he’d occasionally have flattering off line comments that may have led to longer texting conversations or facebook messages.
I knew he was interested. He’d stick a toe in the water and flirted, but never crossed the line. He was respectful. He waited and watched to see if I’d give him any room to talk a little slicker.
So last night, I went ahead and let him hit.
Well, not really. Just by text.
Sexting is an interesting thing, because it forces people to do what they often don’t want to do when it comes to actually having sex.
Explicitly and without any room for misinterpretation telling people exactly what you want how you want it and how you like it.
It’s actually a great exercise to build your confidence in asking for what you want and having a safe space to either feel good about asking for it, or finding out how your partner tries to derail your efforts in their own sexy way without breaking the mood.
Sexting does have some draw backs.
It’s not the real thing.
Faking it is even easier.
You can file your nails, send other texts (just don’t send the wrong ones to the wrong people, please), sit in the drive thru and order your food, while sending your lover into a complete frenzy.
Which subsequently created a new problem.
Refreshed from the whole encounter, he asked it we’d do it again tomorrow and this time speak over the phone.
I was taken aback.
I told him that disciplined men turn me on and to pace himself.
He said he was addicted and it would be hard.
So the following day he asked again, and the day after.
At this point my Aquarian nature that hates routine or feeling obligated to do anything for anyone just because I did it once was starting to show itself.
So when he was hinting at wanting to engage in another session, I simply told him no.
Actually nope was what I typed. And with no further explanation. That actually felt liberating. I felt that I had the right to say no, without explanation because hey, I can say no to something I don’t want to do. Aside from just being cool, I have no real obligation to him nor him to me.
This is where the liberation and consent come in. In this new age of texting and skyping and online dating people have had no problems with sending racy messages or nude or semi-nude photos to people unsolicited.
Women or anyone, for that matter will always have the right, even if it’s via the exchange of words to tell someone you don’t want to do something, or you feel uncomfortable with the way the conversation is going.
So when two days later, my sexting friend wanted to have another moment and I wasn’t in the mood and he began to use similar tactics men use when they are in person and want you to have sex, I had to stop him in his tracks.
I wasn’t going to be a complete jerk about it, but I had to be firm and I had to let him know this is where the conversation is going to end, and this is where I stand.
I replied: “I don’t mind playing along and being a fantasy when I feel like it. When I feel like it, it’s fun. But when I don’t feel like it, it’s not fun for me.”
His response was simple. “That’s fair.”
And we kept it moving. Any response other than “That’s fair” or “I respect that” or “Whatever you want” was going to get him deaded. Period and the end.
I think my response was very accurate while creating a boundary for myself that I don’t want crossed. I have agency over me, my body, my thoughts and how a respond to whatever is happening to me.
As harmless as sending a sext could seem, I think even with some good grown people fun, it’s important that as soon as one person in the party isn’t having a good time, then it needs to get shut down.
The feminist in me was irritated that he wanted to do this every night and that he’d have the audacity to keep asking. I mean I do have a job, and friends and family. I’m not a phone sex operator. Now if he wanted to pay me $20 a minute, I think I can muster up the energy to work something out… no just kidding… or not… (I do have student loans)
Anyway, it made me wonder if he did consider me to be a fantasy woman to be there at his beck and call. He lives far away, and when we actually lived in the same area, I wasn’t checking for him nor were we even in the same social circles. We only knew of each other, and he was married. Now divorced, he started popping up from time-to-time sending me friendly Facebook messages privately. Only fairly recently did he bring up that he thought I was attractive during a brief period of us working at the same company.
I’m not sure what his angle is, especially considering he’d been popping up off and on going on for years.
At any rate, I like the fact that I learned a lot about being more comfortable about expressing what I like and what I want, and what I don’t want. I also liked the fact that I bluntly stood up for what I didn’t want. I was proud to not have to apologize for being a woman who liked sexting but felt no obligation to keep the party going on demand for a man.