Remember that time I found out, right before it was about to happen, that I was about to have sex with my friend’s boyfriend, while my friend watched?
That night was a hoot.
In the novel I’m writing, there is a running theme about the miscommunication and difference of perception, between different (and the same) genders regarding love, relationships and sex.
There are a lot of moments displaying how two people (usually of the opposite gender) can perceive the same situation completely differently.
I’ve had many experiences of this type of miscommunication or misreads in real-life.
There’s something about these moments that seem magically delightful to me (although, sometimes the delightful doesn’t hit home immediately.) Our clumsy dealings with each other amuse me greatly.
The story I opened this post with is a prime example.
So, do you want to know the rest of that story? Okay, well here it is…
So the love of my life, who had left 12 months earlier, had just returned and left again within the past 24 hours. I had seen him. My heart had exploded with love for him all over again. And as he left, my heart crumbled into a thousand pieces, scattering so far out of my reach that I feared a heart transplant may be my only way forward.
I called several friends and they all came around. It was a night attempting to help comfort/forget my pain.
I was a mess. I cried. Then drank to stop the crying. Then cried some more. Also attempting to dance occasionally in between the crying and drinking ebb and flow.
So, when the night neared the end and my friend’s boyfriend opened a conversation about our plan, we had all apparently been aware of, to have sex with me while his girlfriend, my friend, watched, you can imagine it had a little bit of a hit-in-the-face-by-a-mack-truck kind of impact.
I mean, I definitely wanted friendship. I definitely wanted comfort. But I definitely did NOT want to bonk my friend’s boyfriend — with or without the spectator.
So I’m standing there and the guy was talking logistics. Seriously, like where we were gonna do it, tonight!. And my was brain on high-speed rewind, playing catch-up, trying to find out how the fuck this had happened. Searching for the very important conversations I had obviously missed.
They had misread my entire friendship and kindness as something much, much more. I wondered if I shoudn’t have offered those hugs? Had my empathy been a sign of wanting sex?
How HAD this happened?
I mean, I’m certain there was a healthy amount of dickhead-ism at play in this scenario, but I was still confused.
At the time I was confused mostly by the fact that I thought this was the kind of largish event people would want to discuss pretty clearly. You know, just to make sure EVERYONE was on the same page.
In hindsight though, and through my writing research, I have learned that this is exactly the kind of activity that people do NOT speak openly about. This kind of arrangement is shrouded in code words, silent motions and hidden meanings.
So, in hindsight, I can now see how easy it was for me to not know that bringing bananas to a picnic with these people was code for ‘I’m hungry for your manhood.’
Honestly though? I think the lesser intense misreads or differences in perceptions often just happen because of that whole being human thing. We’re still learning.
And maybe even more, I think in any given moment, most people are thinking more about themselves than the other person. Usually thinking about what they want to get out of the interaction.
I wanted friendship — they wanted to get laid.
(Yes, ‘they.’ I had a feeling the two-way with a spectator was quickly becoming a three-way.)
I declined their offer. They didn’t take my rejection well.
Lesson here? Well, I don’t know if there’s a lesson in this for anyone else, but for me, the lesson was a new introduction for myself that went something like this, for the next few months…
‘Hi, I’m Zoe. Nice to meet you. If you ever get the urge to smash cut the idea of a three-way, two-way, or any other kind of way, onto me, I’d appreciate a little advanced warning please.’