I don’t sleep with guys on the first date. It’s a long-standing principle that I simply refuse to compromise on. It’s something I will proudly proclaim with great moral certitude to anyone that will listen. If you want to date me, that’s just the way it is. If you don’t like it, well there’s the door. Lump it or leave it.
So how the hell did I find myself lying in bed next to a perfect stranger one morning a couple of weeks ago?
Okay, I over-dramatise; he wasn’t a complete stranger. I had met him the night before. We had set up a date after a few days of messaging each other online, and a few hours after meeting we were doing things that would keep an obsessive compulsive manically washing his hands (and other body parts) for weeks on end.
I pathetically kept trying to hold myself back throughout the night, vaguely aware of some very feeble little voice cautioning me to stop. Plus, my date didn’t exactly slam on the brakes.
Now some of you will ask what the big deal is and I do understand your confusion. I know I’m in the minority here; many will accuse me of letting down the side. What kind of gay man am I exactly? Most of my friends believe that I’m unnecessarily depriving myself of a good time. Why can’t I just have fun and leave it at that, they ask? They roll their eyes when I recount that yet another first date ended with a brief peck on the cheek.
Not everyone takes this well. On a first date a couple of years ago, too many glasses of red wine led to a bout of messy kissing and groping. When I called a ‘time-out’ the guy got rather peeved. He couldn’t understand my need to slow things down and instead aggressively accused me of not really “being into” him after all – which resulted in exactly that becoming the case.
“The next day I was rather perplexed as to how exactly I had broken my most sacrosanct rule…”
I’ve heard it said that women need to fall in love with a guy to sleep with him and that guys need to sleep with a woman to fall in love with her. If there’s any truth to this on-the-surface archaic thinking I’m not sure where it leaves us gay men. But God knows it probably can’t be anywhere good.
In my case, my brain is wired so as to be unable to differentiate between sex and emotion. I suffer from becoming infuriatingly over-attached to a guy after sleeping with him – even following the very first liaison. (Sad, I know). Therefore I’ve decided over the years that it’s much safer that I get to know someone before I shag them. In that way I get to decide if I actually like the guy before proposing marriage (or should that be “civil union”?).
Thankfully that wasn’t the case with my most recent ‘conquest’. The next day I was rather perplexed as to how exactly I had broken my most sacrosanct rule. After all, I didn’t drink (that) much. It could have been the fact that at the time I didn’t think that the date was going very well (we didn’t have very much of interest to say to each other) and was quite surprised when he started to get physical. Not expecting that things might go in that direction I was strangely disarmed. Or perhaps I was simply horny.
I did try to take things further and we went on another date. I was hoping that perhaps we might break that initial awkwardness of the first meeting. After talking endlessly about his obsession with cars and the multitude of foods that he’s allergic to, I realised that we communicate best when wearing very little and not speaking at all. It’s a pity; he’s a nice guy, but I steeled myself to the fact that although we had done the deed this wasn’t going to go anywhere.
So, it’s back to square one: First dates and civilised pecks on the cheek. Did I have fun that wayward night a few weekends ago? Yeah, I did. A lot. He was a great looking guy with everything in all the right places. But, as I may have said before, I simply don’t sleep with a guy on the first date.