SL Letter of the Day: Eat and Run

Comments

1
As a straight woman, I don't know that I'm qualified to weigh in with advice here, but I think Dan missed it this time.
I'd tell him that you're going to have to end the arrangement. You don't need to offer a reason, but if you want, you can imply that you have just started a more serious relationship with someone and you don't want to continue seeing casual blow buddies or you no longer have time or you are going to give monogamy a try.

Then say that you know how hard it was when you were young and were first coming out (act as though you assume he's in fact coming out) and that you sure could have used a mentor-type figure to help you navigate the new terrain. Offer to be that for him (while stressing that you don't have a lot of time to get together--see the part in the paragraph above). Reassure him that he's hot and that it's so much better to be out. Tell him that even if he's not ready now, when he is ready to come out, you'd be happy to be a source of information and support. Then step aside and let him decide whether or not he's going to come out and if so, whether or not he wants to avail himself of the support--and newly-defined--relationship you're offering.
2
@1, so rather than explaining the truth, you think lying about a new relationship is a better way to treat a kid? this teaches him what about healthy relationships?
3
@2: The lw was clear that he finds the guy too boring or relationship such as it is too boring to want to continue, but since he's the older man (and presumably, since he's out), he thinks it's his responsibility to not scar the kid who already seems troubled by saying "you're too boring for me to want to continue seeing you, even though I'm 44 and chubby and you're 18 and incredibly hot."

I agree that that would not be invoking the campsite rule.
I don't think that the lw has to lie egregiously; he doesn't need to offer any reason for breaking things off. But if he wants to give one, I don't think that honesty is the best policy in this particular case.
And as long as the kid doesn't find out it's a lie (and who knows: he could be newly infatuated with someone, want to spend a lot of free time with him, and then the new relationship could still evaporate in a flash--happens all the time), what this says about healthy relationships is that when you are done with one, you politely break things off, rather than pull a disappearing act. And you offer your support and friendship.
4
I'm with Dan and Rizzo. Why tell a lie when the truth works.
5
@3 I dont think he said the guy is necessarily boring. I think he said, or implied, that he's bored because he's closeted and doesn't want to explore any emotional commitment whatsoever, even a fwb type connection. So I think Dan was trying to encourage that type of connection, which could end up being good for both sides.
6
FIrst off: I am going on 50 and the older I get (and the whiter my beard gets), the more I attract the 18-22 year old Mexican boys. A lot of them are definitely looking for a father figure, and if you're white, older and bearish, you're their dream come true; Santa Claus, basically.

@ 1 - Sorry, but Dan is right. Or at least righter than you are. At this point, the kid as zero intention of ever coming out, and would only admit that he's gay if he's outed (and only with evidence, like a video - and even then he'll probably try to convince his mom that it's somebody who happens to look like him, with the same haircut, the same name and identical birthmarks in the same places etc.). So if the LW offers to be his mentor and help him come out, he'll never hear from the kid again, and the kid is more likely to hide deeper in his closet after that.

In Dan's scenario, the kid is also likely to run away screaming, but there's a good chance he phones back a few months later and accepts the deal, because it's not really threatening to his status quo. Then and only then is there a chance that he'll (very) slowly start to imagine a future where he can fully accept his homosexuality.
7
From the letter it doesn't sound as though the 18 wants any sort of a connection aside from the mouth-to-penis one.

8
Nocutename the problem with inventing a nonexistent relationship while offering to be a source of support is the danger that Mr 18 will come around for support and. Notice the absence of the alleged new partner
9
I'm more with LW here. They're basically masturbating at this point, and, as far as LW is concerned, he might as well do it solo. 18 or not, closeted or not, into the guy or not, you've got an obligation to meet your partners needs lest ye end up kicked to the curb.
10
Oh okay, I guess you all know better than me. I just think that saying "if he wants to keep blowing you, well, there's going to be some getting to know you. He'll have to risk a conversation now and then, maybe even watching a movie together sometime at your apartment. Tell him you can't be friends-with-benefits with someone who isn't a friend" is likely to get this kid to say something pretty ugly right before he takes off forever. I picture a closeted, male version of mydriasis, someone who thinks that his youth, hot body, and good looks should be enough to make an older, overweight man practically delirious with joy for being lucky enough to get to blow him and be blown by him. And if the lw says he wants more--even if that "more" is just ordinary companionship, I can see such a person lashing out cruelly.

Also, my post @7 should have read "18-year-old," not "18."
11
@8: First of all, I doubt the kid is going to come around for support. But if he did, why would he expect to see a new boyfriend there? Have you heard of dating? It's when two people go out but live in separate places.

I'm not saying that the lw has to invent a relationship complete with faked wedding photos--I've said twice that he doesn't need to offer any reason for ending things. I also don't think that alluding to a (non-existent) boyfriend is such a huge deal. It's called a face-saving lie: it allows the 18-year-old to be soothed. It's a version of "it's not you; it's me." We all know that that means "it's you," yet we understand it as a tactful way of extricating yourself.

Also, how do we know that when the kid meets someone he's really into, he won't be a chatty cathy, opening up and revealing all his thoughts and feelings. Maybe he's just not into the lw enough to bother with talk, but when he meets a guy he is more interested in, he'll behave very differently.
12
I'm with @6. The sex can be an eventual draw for the mentor support @1 aims for; they don't have to be separated and, in my gay experience, often go together nicely. And (as if this were happening now) NWATB could try more subtly for a few sessions before issuing Dan's ultimatum. I've had the experience of purely physical interactions with non-out guys that, after a good while, opened into a little more.

Would be nice to know how this played out. I'm a 47-year-old white bear in subway land but, alas, this wasn't me.
13
nocutename, I think the mentorship idea isn't a bad one, especially if the LW is bored enough that he doesn't want even a FWB arrangement anymore.

However, I don't think there is any harm in the gentle honesty Dan recommended. I wouldn't suggest calling the kid "boring"; honest or not that's just cruel. However, "I like the blowjobs, but I need us to became the "friends" part of this friends with benefits arrangement if we want to continue" is gentle, friendly, and honest.

If the 18-year-old wants to say something horrible after that, I think the LW will be able to handle it.
14
Can't wait for the follow up letter from the 18 year-old:

Dear Dan,
I was 69ing with this 44 year-old bearish guy last night. He pumped his load down my throat, and then I sat on his face and jacked off with his tongue up my ass. Am I gay?
15
@ 14 - You forgot to add: "I swear I was thinking about girls all throughout."
16
The refusal to kiss is what gets to me. I'm wondering whether he's opposed to that so that he can continue to convince himself that he's really not gay; it's just that he has no other avenues for sex. Why? Because I see the eventually tragic marriage to a nice virgin girl to satisfy his family. And the Craigslist hookups will continue.

I have to agree with #14 and #15. Sad that this kid will never benefit from It Gets Better.
17
Sorry if this a repeat, as my original comment hasn't posted. Hello, all—first time on here (but long time reader!) LW sounds like a decent guy who wants to abide by the Campfire Rule, but I certainly hope this kid has proof of being 18. Last thing LW needs is a stat rape accusation, if the parents somehow find out.
18
Refusing to kiss is a hangup for a lot of guys. It seems odd, I know, but some closeted guys have this mindset that a kiss is more intimate, or has more of an emotional connection than a blowjob. A blowjob is just sex. A kiss is part of that whole love thing. That used to be a common attitude in bath houses (maybe still is) and among sex workers.

It's like a blowjob is just getting your rocks off. But a kiss means you're really gay. Refusing to kiss helps compartmentalize that closet.
19
@nocutename #10

I found NWATB's description of his hottie lover to invoke a very different image than you've imagined the kid to be. The reaction you envision he'd have if told the simple truth sounds more like a spoiled, petulant egomaniac--which seems incongruent with NWATB's description:

"He's a sweet kid but deeply closeted; given what little I know of his Dominican family and group of friends, he's years away from coming out."

There's no terrible truth to protect him from by inventing a lie here. I can't see how it would in any way promote healthy adult communication modeling, which I think is behind Dan's approach to telling the simple truth--and possibly opening a way for the poor kid to unpack his coming out issues safely.

When NWATB wrote "I'm under no illusion that I'm what he's looking for, but I am an available sexual outlet", I read that to mean he'd be down for the connection to deepen, which is what seemed to shape Dan's advice. I think he was spot on.
20
@6 Dead on.
NWATB the other, easier way is to not be available once or twice. I presume he's texting before he comes over. Tell him not tonight and see what happens (not responding at all seems outside the campsite rule boundary).
21
Nocutename, you’re thinking like a straight girl in a gay guy situation. Dan is right, LW shouldn’t invent a boyfriend to reject a guy whose feelings he doesn’t want to hurt.
22
@1: I also agree with Dan, sorry. And I don't see why the 18-year-old would "lash out" if told by LW, "This has been fun, but I'm looking for something with a BIT more depth, even just hanging out and chatting in addition to the sex. If you're up for that, great; if not, I think we should both move on."

He met this guy on Craigslist, ffs; I doubt either of them was expecting whatever arrangement resulted to be a permanent one.
23
And I doubt a hot 18-year-old will have much trouble finding a new bear to blow, should his arrangement with this one end.
24
Heh...all I want to say is "First World Problems". I'm a straight but kinky male so I'm also probably disqualified, but I think Dan's advice sounds really good actually.
25
Ms Cute - I am trying to calculate the possibility of Ms Driasis ever having been called "a sweet kid" by an Interested Party twenty-five years her senior after the bloom had faded somewhat.

LW has basically a good attitude (certainly a better attitude than that of some similar LWs in the recent past), and I'm inclined to think along Ms Helenka's lines that continuing with things as they are, while supportive and helpful on one front, is not doing many favours for Inamorato's future partners or even the 44-year-old Inamorato himself. This could, of course, be exactly the arrangement LW wanted, only thinking Inamorato would certainly tire of it first. He might try advancing that the next time Inamorato visits should be for dinner.
26
Alright, you all. I respect your opinions. Must have just been my mood yesterday.
This letter is from 2012--I wonder what happened.
27
nocutename one issue with your suggestion is if the boy finds out he was lied to there's a good chance that will completely destroy his trust in the LW, and halt or even reverse any headway they've made for coming out of the closet.

Yeah the kid might be ass when being dumped but most people are, I get the feeling the LW can handle it.
28
Re men who have sex with women being possibly gay.

If a man can have sex with both women and men, I thought that was bi. Or is that only for women?
29
@28: Anyone CAN have sex with both men and women. It's whether they WANT TO that makes them straight, gay or bi.

A lot of gay men don't accept the idea that some men are bi. This is because they, themselves, went through a "denial" phase that they project upon the other guy. If a man engages in any same-sex sex at all, it's assumed he just isn't ready to come out as gay yet. Which is pretty biphobic if you think about it.
30
Ms Cute - I wondered why you seemed almost to be doubling down.

Ms Phile - What, then, is your take on the personal history of Mr Savage? And I have a friend with a history almost identical to Mr Savage's, including both the SS fantasies required to get through OS activities (though he has not yet admitted to Andy Gibb) and the staunch SS stand for his entire adulthood, but who presents as bi to honour the validity of his OS relationships. Who has the standing or the backing of consensus to draw the map and assign people their proper places?
31
Oh - it should have been "proper places" in quotation marks.

Ms Fan is not wrong, but that's an incomplete picture. I think it was last summer we had two or three letters from or about bi men essentially punishing gay (and other bi) men for straight women's assumptions that one SS encounter = gay, or being punished by straight women for not falling in line with such policing. And there was that podcast call from the woman who'd wanted an MFM threesome with two particular friends. It didn't happen at the time, but she was thinking about trying to organize it for the future; perhaps she was even offering to fly them out to her? The details are fuzzy, but if memory serves Mr Savage's position was that it would have been inappropriate for the two men to be enthusiastic about her suggestion at first, but that they should fall in with gusto once it was clear that they wouldn't be using her.
32
@ 29 - Sorry, but not everyone can have sex with both men and women. I have never, ever, ever felt any sexual attraction for women. Even when I was younger and hard and horny 24/7, the proximity of a scantily clad woman would instantly make me lose my erection.
33
@26 nocutename

Let that be a lesson to you. We here don't approve of lying in relationships. The very thought makes me clutch my pearls!
34
Mr Ricardo - While I'm with you in sentiment, I think it depends on exactly what degree of participation is required to fulfill the working definition of what constitutes "sex". While I don't think I could go so far as Mr Savage has gone, and I suppose you couldn't, either, I imagine that, if someone were holding a gun to the head of my absolutely final boyfriend, I could close my eyes, think of Amsterdam, place a hand where directed, and follow instructions. Saving a life would override any other concern. If you want to amend to claim that not all men capable of producing the generally recognized symbol of male arousal can do so in the company of or in response to the ministrations of a woman, then we are on the same line.
35
@ 34 - I suppose you're right, and masturbation does qualify as sex, but any further than that? I'd have to say my goodbyes to my hypothetical absolutely final boyfriend.
36
Re think that #1. That's bad advice.
37
@32: As Alison has pointed out previously, you do not necessarily need an erection to have sex. You could give oral sex or she could use a strap-on.
38
@30 Venn - Oh my what an invitation, I can't refuse to analyze Dan. I would attempt to predict his behavior assuming his nature is homoflexible, honestly. I think if Terry wanted to see it he'd eventually come around.. but otherwise not want it. My cheeks are aflame. Dan is gay. He only sleeps with men and calls himself gay and is happy with that and that's fine by me.

The stereotypical letter from a het married man with SS fantasies or affairs, that 14&15 reminded me of.. I'd call that bi perhaps, but certainly not gay. Maybe Dan has changed his response in recent years and I'm thinking about older columns.
39
@ 37 - No, I could not give oral sex to a woman. And since I don't like toys, a strap on is not something I would enjoy. Besides, it would be a woman wearing it, so there would be no point.

What part of "I have never, ever, ever felt any sexual attraction for women" wasn't clear enough? The notions of "sex" and "women" are absolutely incompatible for me, period.
40
@39: This really is a tangential discussion, when I only meant to correct @28's definition that a bisexual person "can" have sex with both men and women and restate it as "wants to" have sex with men and women.

The notions of "sex" and "great big hairy man" are absolutely incompatible for me, but I physically COULD do it, if, you know, it would bring about world peace or save someone I loved from a gruesome death. It's not about whether we would get any enjoyment out of it, it's about whether it would physically be possible.
It's physically possible for me to have children, but that ain't never ever ever going to happen either.
41
@ 40 - It is extremely tangential, agreed, but what you're essentially saying (if I push it a bit further) is that everyone could be a victim of torture. True, but what's the point of submitting yourself to it if you can avoid it?
42
One thing I don't see the man saying is "I want to have a relationship with this boy." Friendship or otherwise. I hear, "The novelty has worn off." I hear, "I want to make sure I'm not an asshole o this kid." I hear a fatherly, "He's a sweet boy who I don't want to fuck up." I don't hear, "I'm smitten with him and would like more." I don't hear, "I think we could have a nice friendship if he'd just open up a little." I don't hear, "I could be a great mentor to him as he comes out."

I don't at all think the man is a dick, but his letter, to me, very much reads as someone who is done with the situation and looking to exit gracefully. The "campfire" rule is invoked when you are done camping, not when you just want to pitch a new tent.

Absent of any positively-framed* desire to get to know the boy, it's best to simply and politely break it off.

* "I want him", as opposed to the negatively-framed desire the man wrote: "I don't want to hurt him."
43
I agree with 42 on the stance/intent of the LW.
Also, cultural relevance, people. The kid may never come out. Coming out is more likely to have seriously bad consequences for people who belong to cultures in which homophobia is more deeply rooted. I have South American family, and when one of them finally came out after 20 years of marriage, child-rearing, contributing to the common good, etc. she was essentially disowned by her own family of origin, friends, etc.
When I taught h.s. in NYC, a third of my students were Dominican, and many of the guys were definitely hostile to the one flaming queer kid (a Venezuelan), in spite of the efforts of the school staff (including a couple gay/bi faculty) to promote an accepting atmosphere.
So our bearish LW would be swimming upstream against a pretty heavy current. Not saying he shouldn't try, but he shouldn't be surprised if his effort is summarily shut down.
44
@41: I never advocated that anyone should submit to sex -- or any other activity -- they find unappealing. I was defining sexual orientation as based on desire rather than physical ability. What's unclear here?
45
@42: Michael LC: I agree with everything you say. I initially took the "offer to be a mentor" route because Dan seemed to think that the lw wanted to be a help of sorts. But I also hear a man who is bored and over the novelty and wants to find a way to exit this situation gracefully, hampered by his desire to not be a dick given the age/experience discrepancy.