In August, shortly after I moved back to Pendleton for my sons' senior year and to take on a new assignment at work, I took myself out to the cinema to see "Guardians of the Galaxy". (I’ll take any chance to post a picture of Chris Pratt) I had spent the summer of 2014 growing increasingly disenchanted with the gay social networking sights... Grindr, Growlr and Scruff. The local prospects were shallow, closet cases or both. As I sat waiting for the previews to begin, I decided to delete them and take a break from 'putting myself out there'. I noticed a new face on Growlr... a handsome black man... tall (6'6") and about ten years younger than I. He said he was new to the area and seemed to be equally disenchanted with the local prospects. We chatted through the movie and agreed to meet for a drink afterwards. We chatted over drinks and things progressed from there.
I promised myself I wouldn’t make the mistakes of the past, something that I have felt has sabotaged other attempts at a relationship. Mistake #1… he moved in really soon. We joked that he was a hook-up that never left. There were red flags and I was honest when they would come up. The biggest ones were a lovely combination of self-pity and paranoia/jealousy. As my regular readers and people who know me in the real world, I enjoy people watching… especially guys who look like Chris Pratt. The paranoia/jealousy would rear its ugly head whenever he felt I was looking at a guy. He made me explain how I knew everyone on my friends list on Facebook. He made a fool of himself by responding to a text I received from a friend stating that he (the friend) was to stop contacting me because I was taken. He had no concept of the idea that two gay men could be friends without it turning into an orgy. He would get pissy at the pub when I would look at people. Granted, occasionally I would see someone who caught my eye… but mostly it was someone I knew from the community. I have lived here nine of the last 12 years.
We were together for three months, confrontations got better. But mostly I just got better at masking my wandering eye. By the way… let the record show that I never cheated on him. Never gave him any reason to believe I would… but there it was paranoia/jealousy.
The final straw was that none of my kids liked him. They saw him as a perpetual victim who judged them for their thoughts and feelings as well. My oldest daughter, who lives here too, spent a lot of time at friends house because she just couldn’t deal with him. She wanted to tell him how it was… but she didn’t for the sake of family harmony. The big one was when word came to me that he had flipped off my son’s girlfriend. He didn’t know it was her (which actually makes matters worse), but who does that? Flips off a teenaged girl on a residential street in a small town?
The hard part is that he still lives here.. I’ve told him he needed to be out by December 1st, but he played my soft heart and the holiday season. God, I hope this doesn’t last long. I’m being very forthright with my intentions. I fear the emotional manipulation will get thick.
Once I get his ass out of my house… it will be a LONG time before I step in the relationship pile of shit again.