What I've Learned From Exes

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    Jan 19, 2012 9:57 PM GMT
    I was just having a chat with my best friend about what people know they need in a relationship... and how they know they need it. Naturally, relationships give us the most insight into what we think about relationships. What are some things you guys have learned from exes that are shaping what you believe about current or future relationships?

    Here are mine:

    Fuck-buddy Chris - That being hot can't substitute for being a good person. And that people aren't friends just because they hang around you. Chris was hot, but looking back he was also a jerk... and his proximity made me imagine he was a friend.

    David (First boyfriend) - That some fundamental differences are deal-breakers. David liked me a lot... a whole lot. But it was doomed from the outset. He saw the world fundamentally differently than I did inasmuch as he didn't believe at all in God. I can respect someone else's non-belief, that's fine, but I've come to realize that when it comes to a partner, this is an issue. If he hears me speak about something close to my heart, and treats me with polite contempt because he thinks I essentially believe in magic and faeries, it's not going to work.

    Eduardo (Last boyfriend) - Eduardo, for all his many failings, taught me that I need intensity. There is that part of me that can be neurotic: the part that makes people analyze too deeply, or always question the other person, or always wonder "why didn't he text me back immediately!?" etc etc. I never felt that with Eduardo because he was so in touch with his emotions that he let it all spill out... he was intensely attracted to me and let me know it. He was unambiguously attracted to me and never played coy.

    Stephen - Stephen is a great guy, has a fun personality, has a lot of energy, a high sex drive, and a lot of money. But we never really clicked. And dating Stephen really taught me that everything in the world can be going right, but there is something ineffable and mysterious about romantic attraction that sends all other things to the background... and without that spark, no amount of dating (and we dated a long time) is going to get that started.

    Best friend Will - Being friends with Will had taught me that my husband needs to be my best friend... There is an easy familiarity with Will, and with my straight friend Greg for that matter, that makes me never feel as though I'm censoring myself, or pretending to be something I'm not. I've never felt I had to. The organic ease with which I just am myself is freeing... My husband has to make me feel the same way: completely comfortable being entirely myself.
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    Jan 20, 2012 1:31 AM GMT



    Say Larkin, this part: "He saw the world fundamentally differently than I did inasmuch as he didn't believe at all in God. I can respect someone else's non-belief, that's fine, but I've come to realize that when it comes to a partner, this is an issue. If he hears me speak about something close to my heart, and treats me with polite contempt because he thinks I essentially believe in magic and faeries, it's not going to work."

    That was him, not his non-belief. I'm married to a non-believer and we have no issues around this. He's very supportive because he understands why I believe what I believe.

    -Doug
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    Jan 20, 2012 6:53 PM GMT
    Larkin said If he hears me speak about something close to my heart, and treats me with polite contempt because he thinks I essentially believe in magic and faeries, it's not going to work.


    It's hard discussing things with non-believers, so I try to kind of avoid those topics.

    Like once, I mentioned jokingly about a simple thing about the bible saying of clean and unclean animal foods, like pork. I didn't say that I was suggesting him or even suggesting that I adhere strictly to it...but somehow the topic just peaked up over dinner.

    The guy was like, shutup...just stop talking. I'm like dayum, I'm just saying what it says. Don't get all bent out of a shape about it.
  • Trepeat

    Posts: 546

    Jan 20, 2012 9:16 PM GMT
    Mike- I can`t become involved with someone who`s insecure about themselves. As great as you were and could have continued to be, your hang ups and deep-seated issues with yourself made engaging in a real relationship an impossibility. If I`m gonna be with a guy, he has to love and repsect himself fully.

    Ian- you were a lot better to me than I was to you. We clicked well, had great conversations, and you treated me with a whole lot of respect. Unfortunately, I just wasn`t infatuated with you like you were with me. No matter how well I can get along with a guy, or how good the sex is, it`s doomed from the start if I`m not absolutely wild about him.

    Glenn- you liked the idea of me, not me. It`s a crucial distinction when dating.

    Todd- in the future I will try to be more careful in making sure that I`m certain from that start the guy I`m investing my emotions in isn`t a sociopath.

    Chris- No republicans. No closet cases.

    Quinn- despite our relationship being entirely platonic, you were easily the closest thing I`ve ever had to a boyfriend. The way you made me open up my heart and find joy is now the benchmark that ever future potential-suitor will have to meet. You showed me what emotional intimacy is, and how crucial it is for a deep, loving relationship.


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    Jan 20, 2012 9:19 PM GMT
    My first and last: DONT get into drugs
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:29 PM GMT
    GreenHopper saidMy first and last: DONT get into drugs
    Or alcohol!
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:29 PM GMT
    TropicalMark said
    GreenHopper saidMy first and last: DONT get into drugs
    Or alcohol!


    O no, I love alcohol lol.. but yeah, dont go alcoholic... obviously
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:37 PM GMT
    I have a question about David, the first boyfriend. . .because I've struggled with that before too.

    Do you think that it can work, if the other person at least respects that you have a religious compass - and doesn't put you down for those opinions? Or do you think it simply cant work at all?
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:38 PM GMT
    GreenHopper said
    TropicalMark said
    GreenHopper saidMy first and last: DONT get into drugs
    Or alcohol!


    O no, I love alcohol lol.. but yeah, dont go alcoholic... obviously
    Thats what I meant..icon_wink.gif
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:38 PM GMT
    7Famark saidI have a question about David, the first boyfriend. . .because I've struggled with that before too.

    Do you think that it can work, if the other person at least respects that you have a religious compass - and doesn't put you down for those opinions? Or do you think it simply cant work at all?
    It depends on BOTH parties having an adult understanding.. otherwise its doomed.
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    Jan 20, 2012 9:55 PM GMT
    Trepeat saidChris- No republicans. No closet cases.


    I have one of those in my dating portfolio. It was so depressing every year when my mother sent him gifts and invited him over for Christmas dinner... and his mother had no idea I existed. Never again.

    GreenHopperMy first and last: DONT get into drugs


    Got one of those too.

    I also have an ex who is a doctor (WARNING: blatant generalization ahead) and I don't think I could ever date a doctor again because they seem to lack critical interpersonal skills. Really hot in bed though.
  • a303guy

    Posts: 829

    Jan 20, 2012 10:52 PM GMT
    What an really great thread topic. Larkin, I have a whole new level of respect for you. Very well written - and thought out.

    I'm putting together a post of my own for here. Will be interesting to compare notes for sure.
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    Jan 20, 2012 10:54 PM GMT
    endo said
    Trepeat saidChris- No republicans. No closet cases.


    I have one of those in my dating portfolio. It was so depressing every year when my mother sent him gifts and invited him over for Christmas dinner... and his mother had no idea I existed. Never again.

    GreenHopperMy first and last: DONT get into drugs


    Got one of those too.

    I also have an ex who is a doctor (WARNING: blatant generalization ahead) and I don't think I could ever date a doctor again because they seem to lack critical interpersonal skills. Really hot in bed though.


    Yup, that is blatant haha.. most doctors I know myself are really good at those skills and very social... and yes, hot in bed too...most all I have known... ahem (med student here icon_redface.gif )
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    Jan 20, 2012 11:19 PM GMT
    GreenHopper said
    endo said
    Trepeat saidChris- No republicans. No closet cases.


    I have one of those in my dating portfolio. It was so depressing every year when my mother sent him gifts and invited him over for Christmas dinner... and his mother had no idea I existed. Never again.

    GreenHopperMy first and last: DONT get into drugs


    Got one of those too.

    I also have an ex who is a doctor (WARNING: blatant generalization ahead) and I don't think I could ever date a doctor again because they seem to lack critical interpersonal skills. Really hot in bed though.


    Yup, that is blatant haha.. most doctors I know myself are really good at those skills and very social... and yes, hot in bed too...most all I have known... ahem (med student here icon_redface.gif )


    Hehe, I work with doctors too, and it's just been my experience that they don't communicate all that well with regular folk. I think it's because they're just so much smarter than everyone else! Is that a backhanded complement? icon_smile.gif
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    Jan 20, 2012 11:31 PM GMT
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    Jan 20, 2012 11:33 PM GMT
    endo said
    GreenHopper said
    endo said
    Trepeat saidChris- No republicans. No closet cases.


    I have one of those in my dating portfolio. It was so depressing every year when my mother sent him gifts and invited him over for Christmas dinner... and his mother had no idea I existed. Never again.

    GreenHopperMy first and last: DONT get into drugs


    Got one of those too.

    I also have an ex who is a doctor (WARNING: blatant generalization ahead) and I don't think I could ever date a doctor again because they seem to lack critical interpersonal skills. Really hot in bed though.


    Yup, that is blatant haha.. most doctors I know myself are really good at those skills and very social... and yes, hot in bed too...most all I have known... ahem (med student here icon_redface.gif )


    Hehe, I work with doctors too, and it's just been my experience that they don't communicate all that well with regular folk. I think it's because they're just so much smarter than everyone else! Is that a backhanded complement? icon_smile.gif


    I dunno..most doctors I knew were actually very sociable.. indeed, much more sociable than scientists.. so I really dont know
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    Jan 21, 2012 12:00 AM GMT
    Hector - I was way too young even though we only dated about a year. I just wanted to explore more before getting serious with anyone. I wasn't ready. I was only 19.

    Joe - After a several years being single, i met him while he was vacationing in ft lauderdale. We instantly clicked and he was quite the bodybuilder. I was attending U of M and it meant sacrificing my studies to move cause he wasnt moving. I thought I was in love but as soon as I moved in the Fall to Ohio and got accepted to Kent State University in Spring, he decided to tell me to come back south to spend the holidays with my family and he would meet up later for the new yr... Since it was the millenium, it meant alot to be together but unfortunately he never came down. Finally there was a picture of him and another kid having a new yrs kiss on the clubs website. I wanna say here is where I started to become less care free to leap into any kind of relationship.

    George - Great Great Great guy... Kick myself for not being emotionally available to him. Basically i left my email account open on his computer, and he saw letters from Joe...

    Bobby - Great guy as well but I couldn't handle the partying.. Unfortunately he passed away while he was with some other kid...

    Lastly David - Sexy masculine looking guy except when he opened his mouth. I think it was his upbringing that made it so difficult to get along with. He was attending Cooley and I was flying back n forth till he moved down to Florida... He was raised with a silver spoon and I was just trying to keep up... Sometimes sacrificing my own happiness for his... This story is a novel all in its own but I will leave it at, after 5 years he left me for a escort...I wanna say it took me 3 years to just pop out of it. There were things that kept bringing us back but not enough to jump start it again.

    I believe my past relationships have been quite the puzzle. Trying to put all the pieces together, is what makes me today... I am still the generous and kind person to this day but very reserved on who I let in.. My only resentment is why people couldnt be more honest with themselves instead of hurting others... I get my moments that I am lonely but a lava cake can fix that easily...





  • a303guy

    Posts: 829

    Jan 21, 2012 12:39 AM GMT
    Thanks again Larkin for starting this one. Here's my contribution:

    Steven - I had just bought my first house, and was falling behind on the payments, so I was looking for a roomie that could help me out financially. After a couple weeks of not finding anyone that I could trust, Steven walked into my house and I knew immediately that we were going to work out just fine. I was totally closeted at the time, and was dating my future wife, and he had just started dating the woman that would become his. Yeah, it was complicated from day one - but we made a 3 year go of it before it all blew up with my fiance figuring out what was going on, and, well, i wound up kicking him out, professing my 'love' to my fiance and getting married. Stupid, Stupid, Stupid. Lesson learned - go with your heart, and not with what you believe everyone expects from you. Years later, he and i were able to patch things up, and we're back to being friends again, but obviously, its just not the same.

    Juan David - fast forward 18 years from the whole Steven debacle, and I'm a much more centered and self-aware man - but nothing prepared me for this guy. He had just arrived in the states from Medellin, Colombia, and was just beginning his citizenship journey. We met completely by accident, and it was 'on' within about 5 minutes. The most devastatingly beautiful man, both physically and emotionally I had ever been with. Absolutely, positively the most intense relationship I've ever had - and the first in which I completely gave my heart away to. Unfortunately for me, all I was actually doing was complicating things for him, as his plan for coming to the US most definitely did not involve falling in love with someone - and hindering him in getting done what he needed to get done to become a resident of the US. In what was one of the hardest things he had ever done - and hardest thing I ever had to endure - he broke it off, and moved to the other side of the country. Lesson learned - do some research before letting yourself go headlong into a relationship. The guy can be a great guy, inside and out - but if his plans don't match up with yours - it ain't gonna work.

    DaveinDenver - yes, he's here on RJ - and is one of my best - if not the best - friend i have. Timewise - we met about halfway between the two guys above, right when i was far enough along in my coming out process to have a pretty firm grasp of who I am, but not really having any grasp at all of how relationships (gay or otherwise) work, or, for that matter, how gay sex works - i wasn't a virgin by any means - but at the age of 40 - i was still a complete neophyte when it came to actually being secure and happy with my sexuality. Dave cured all that. (nuff said) While it would be probably incorrect to include Dave as an 'ex' - we never actually officially dated - to this day we have a fantastic connection, and every time I'm in Denver, there must always be some 'Dave time' - and I'm sure that there always will be, till I take my last breath. Lesson learned: You never know who will be the person that is the catalyst for your own personal growth. With Dave, it started out as 'just sex' - but became so much more. With this man I became who I am today - and for that I'm eternally grateful.
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    Jan 21, 2012 12:50 AM GMT
    To All My Ex Boyfriends/Partners/Husband

    Doug (my first boyfriend, kiss and lay) - Kissing is a beautiful art and you made my first kiss the best of my life! Babe you are so sweet but you were a bad lay... and kind of a pervert for being 25 dating an 18 year old. I will always love you.

    Mark - Mom was right, there are certain benefits to people thinking one is crazy... you should have been afraid of me you nut case sociopath. I have a finger for you.

    Troy - Size counts, and small penises make for fragile egos... I'm sorry I didn't treat your tender heart more gently. I have guilt and a little shame over you.

    Michael G. - A person can say many things but it's what they don't tell you that speaks volumes to how they feel about you and themself. You should have told me you were poz before we had been dating for 3 moths and having sex... even if it was protected. I have pity for you.

    Liam - Timing is vital. Life doesn't treat us all the same and sometimes life's distractions can keep two people apart. I learned to cherish our very real connection... which has lasted much longer than our relationship. I love you.

    Sean - I love artists... but I need logic. I admire you.

    Joe - Age is a number. Driving with the police lights and sirens on in a 300Z while driving 120mph is HOT! Sleeping with a you knowing you can kill in two moves is HOTTER! The toughest men have tender hearts, thank you for letting me in. Proximity counts. I will always love you.

    Michael D - Hippies drive me crazy. Drunks make me sad, you are a drunk icon_sad.gif. Real kindness can not be imitated... I love your kindness.

    Charles - You taught me how to love myself. You taught me to look with my heart and not my eyes. You taught me that the true value of a person is the content of their character which must be delved into and cherished when it speaks to you no matter what the packaging. You taught me real commitment, real love, real respect and the intended value of marriage, partnership, trust and the kind of undying love that will haunt me till the day I die. Your name will be on my lips in my last moments of life. There will never be anyone like you... no matter how hard they try. I will always love you.

    Jeffrey - I learned just how fragile I can be and that I forgot the the lesson I learned from Mark. I hope you die a slow painful death for what you did to me you rotten, rat bastard. I *hate* you... die.

    Rupert - Kindness and boredom can coexist in the same space. I love you.

    Kurt - Tenderness is beautiful. I love, love, love cooking for someone I love. Sex can be delayed, tender and special... which makes it all the better. Thank you for being ever present. I will always love you.

    Trevor - Size counts but if the parts don't all work right... *sigh* so sad. I also need someone who is genuinely interested in me, my friends, my family and my thoughts. I love you... sometimes I wonder why.

    Scott - I love getting flowers at work. I deserve to be treated like a Prince, but for love not possession. You had all the right words, a perfect body, AMAZING cock and we had unparallelled, mind blowing sex 3-5 times a day for 8 months. But all that blinded me from the fact that your perfect packaging contained a permanently damaged product... you were Mark and Jeffrey with flawless marketing... that and I really don't like having to pinch a guys nipples while he fucks me EVERY TIME to get him to cum... it's just distracting.
    I don't know how I feel about you it's been too soon... let me get back to you in two years.

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    Jan 21, 2012 1:25 AM GMT
    Someone told me that whenever you date someone new you should always get closer and closer to your ideal mate. I think I've done that since my first boyfriend to my most recent, on all levels.

    John (First) - Trust your instinct, if you think they're cheating chances are you're right. Also he was my first everything, I was naive enough to think that we would be together forever even though I wasn't happy nor was I old enough to really grasp the idea of forever..I just wanted to be one of the "lucky" ones that got it right the first time.

    Brandon - So driven and passionate...but to a fault! He was so busy focusing on everything he wanted out of life that he didn't have enough time for me. Intellectual attraction an personality just aren't enough, when you know it's right you've got to have everything even the physical aspect.

    Aaron - Such a sweet guy but we weren't headed in the same direction and I wasn't emotionally available to him (The only person I've ever had to break up with).

    Chad - This is where I tried to just go for the hot guy and not just the guy with personality...But it's really true that looks aren't everything, and long-distance is a bitch. I need to be with someone who sees their own faults and celebrates them instead of being in denial. Humility is a necessary trait in order to truly be beautiful outside and in.

    Jordan (Latest) - I thought we were going in the right direction, I felt we clicked on so many levels however his social and personal circumstances are we led to our downfall. Despite being in the military and not out to his family we did our best to make it work. He didn't want his "newness to being gay" to be an issue but it ended up that way. He liked when things were "new" and when things got real and we reached the 1 year mark he bounced. Physically he was right, personality he was right, emotionally he was right...But timing and where we were at in our lives we were wrong.

    Looking at the grand scheme of things I feel like I'm getting closer and closer to my ideal mate while I'm learning more and more about myself. Instead of settling for what was available or the first guy to say he "liked" me, I've learned to be more picky with whom I open myself up to. I wish them all the best in life and hope that I positively impacted their lives in some way.
  • dancedancekj

    Posts: 1761

    Jan 21, 2012 1:58 AM GMT
    endo said
    GreenHopper said
    endo said


    I also have an ex who is a doctor (WARNING: blatant generalization ahead) and I don't think I could ever date a doctor again because they seem to lack critical interpersonal skills. Really hot in bed though.


    Yup, that is blatant haha.. most doctors I know myself are really good at those skills and very social... and yes, hot in bed too...most all I have known... ahem (med student here icon_redface.gif )


    Hehe, I work with doctors too, and it's just been my experience that they don't communicate all that well with regular folk. I think it's because they're just so much smarter than everyone else! Is that a backhanded complement? icon_smile.gif


    *Blatant arrogant statement ahead that is only somewhat tongue in cheek*: I don't have any problems communicating with most people, but I tend to get bored really easily with conversation ("Haven't you been complaining about your boyfriend situation/weight loss inability/how much you hate your job for the past three years?") and I get impatient with people who waste my time, are being rude, or are uninteresting ("No, I don't watch the Kardashians. Please leave me alone.")

    So in a roundabout way, perhaps icon_smile.gif
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    Jan 21, 2012 2:05 AM GMT
    Trepeat said
    Todd- in the future I will try to be more careful in making sure that I`m certain from that start the guy I`m investing my emotions in isn`t a sociopath.


    LOL, OMG...is that the same Todd I was dating? The guy I knew was the same way:

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    Jan 21, 2012 2:19 AM GMT
    What I've learned is that exes are exes for a reason. Avoiding that reason a second time is the most important thing you will learn from having had an ex.
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    Jan 21, 2012 2:37 AM GMT
    I'm lucky though...I don't have any real X's out in Denver. Just guys I met up with once or twice. So when I go to bars, there's no strife or jealousy or anything. Matter of fact, I'm pretty much X free and the only way I'd run into one is if I were to go back to Florida LOL.

    I hang with so many people who while we're out, they go; oh there's my X...and it makes the situation for them so uncomfortable.

    That's why I don't understand how all these gay men all go to the same 24 hour fitness in the same part of town. It's like, would you really want to run into 5 of your X's everytime you workout? That dilutes the workout!
  • SoDakGuy

    Posts: 1862

    Jan 21, 2012 2:59 AM GMT
    I learned you better not hide things from me or I will freak the fuck out. icon_smile.gif be honest and upfront EVEN IF YOU WANNA HAVE SEX W/ SOMEONE ELSE ... let me know. Hell, take pics; just don't hide.