Warning: The following story contains sexual content and repeated use of the f-word. Reader (and my offspring) discretion is advised.

“You look good,” he said, as he put his hands on either side of my face, holding me still for his kiss.

I remember he was a good kisser. I didn’t remember he was so short. But then again, it had been nearly 2 years . . . a few details of memory are bound to fade . . .

His hands went to either side of my ass and he pressed me close (too close!). “You feel good,” he said.

I felt nothing. No sizzle. No sparks. No fireworks. No desire. In my mind I questioned: Had I really fucked this guy?

I had. January – March 2016. In a determined decision to move on after a failed one year affair, he’d been my rebound after Zurich. Initially, I’d been attracted to his persistence. (Readers of I STILL WANT FIREWORKS can flip to page 163. He’s the Easy Rider who picked me up while I was sitting on a rock waiting for the bus.) Back then he was 45, a truck driver with a heavy Philly accent, pugilist features, a stocky build and the same blue collar swagger that would get me into so much deeper trouble 6 months later. But unlike the Mechanic (who still has a hold on my heart), Easy didn’t have a lot of layers. Worse, we had nothing in common. Eventually the small sparkler of interest that was, wasn’t. It fizzled out. Mutually, I’d always assumed, since he’d not contacted me either in 21 months. So why now? Why now had he texted out of the blue (no pun intended) to show up—after such a lapse of time—back at my door?

The answer is crazy complicated, yet insanely simple—and downright Ouija board weird. Because I wanted him to. I needed him to. And I’d said as much—the freakin’ day before! Sitting and talking with a girlfriend, trying to figure out why the guy I’m still hung up on won’t leave my heart or mind as easily as he left my bed and life, I’d expressed aloud one of the cruelest fallout “frustrations” that occurs when a relationship ends. I admitted I was horny. In cruder terms, I may have said I needed to get laid. I probably just said I needed to get fucked. In other words, I told the Universe. To be fair (and blunt) it had been 6 months. Not only was it the longest dry spell in my sexual life (save the last 14 months preceding my walk-out on a marriage that had become toxic), but the fear of never again having sex was beginning to get stronger. Thus it was in that context that I had confessed to her the thought I’d entertained sporadically without any true seriousness:

“I sometimes think about calling Rob.” (not his real name)

“You should!” she said.

“I’m not interested in him,” I answered.

“It’s sex,” she said. “You don’t have to be. You said he was good.”

“He wasn’t bad,” I corrected.

“Well, I think you should. A fuck buddy.” She shrugged. “They do it to us.”

“So two wrongs make a right—and better the devil you know, right?”


And so had I put it “out there” where the Universe heard it.

The next night the circle turned. And the past revolved into present with a text: “Hello, Judith. It’s Rob. Do you remember me?” Of course I did. And of course you know what happened . . . We went out for drinks and then he fulfilled his Universe-mandated purpose and ended my 6 month dry spell. Physically it felt great. It was exactly what I needed and what I wanted. It just wasn’t who I wanted.

I fell asleep on the wrong man’s chest. As aware of the arm that had not wrapped around me as I was of the tears that had. I never heard him leave. I woke up at 4. It was only when I wondered why the Christmas tree lights were still on (and my contacts still in) that I even remembered he’d been there.

Or had he?

In Chapter 28 of I STILL WANT FIREWORKS I posed the question most women starting over must answer for themselves: When all is said and done—and all bullshit and façade stripped away—what is the essential want (or need) you are looking for? There is no right or wrong answer. It depends on each woman’s circumstance and past and what she feels is missing in her life. A woman who was cheated on may choose trust above looks or money or fun. While a woman who hasn’t known infidelity, but who was saddled with an inattentive bore, might choose affection and adventure. A woman who has struggled financially could resolve to struggle no longer. She wants to be wined and dined and spoiled. Financial security, physical affection, companionship and conversation, a social life and/or standing . . . you get my drift. Again, no right or wrong answer. Just know you will likely sacrifice one attribute for another.

In September of ’16, I had done an honest assessment of my life and decided my essential want was sex. Period. I travel just fine on my own (and for free). Clubs, bars and crowds are not my thing. Financially I am solid. I don’t need a male to change a light bulb, the A/C filter or my oil. I’m independent as hell and don’t miss a man to cook for and clean up after. What I missed (and wanted) was the one thing I couldn’t take care of myself (sorry, Carvaka, but plastic is plastic and a man in the flesh is a man in the flesh). I wanted fireworks. Then I met a man who delivered. Yep . . . rocket’s red glare and orgasms bursting in air—and a couple life lessons I somehow missed learning . . . Who knew? (Not I. Obviously.)

LIFE LESSON #1: All sex is not equal. Fuck! (Pun intended) In hindsight (no pun intended) I guess it’s why there are a multitude of different names for it: fuck, screw, get laid, sleep together, make love. When you truly think about it, each has a different connotation. A hook-up is not a fuck buddy is not a friend with benefits is not a lover. Yes, Part A still goes into Part B (or rather more specifically Part C goes into Part P), but as other components become involved . . . time, frequency, familiarity, comfort, trust to name a few . . . well, ladies, now you are really fucked! And not in the way you might want. (I didn’t.) Because now “sex” has begun to evolve into “intimacy.”

Experts have actually defined 4 types of intimacy.

  • Intellectual (a meeting of like-minded intellectual minds)
  • Experiential (a closeness in shared activity or common goal, ala soldiers that live, fight and die alongside one another—or parents raising a family)
  • Sexual (shared sensual and sexual expression)
  • Emotional (shared feelings of trust and vulnerability)

While any of the four can develop into another, it’s the latter two that are the most dangerous. Because of a biological incendiary called oxytocin, playing with sexual intimacy is playing with fire . . . a sneaky, stealthy, subtle and seductive flame that will creep along often without consciousness perception. And then—Wooosh! Emotional intimacy. And emotional intimacy is like a lithium battery fire. It’s not easy to douse. . . BTW, only in its absence do you often even recognize it. (I didn’t) But one truth is certain: Once you’ve had it . . . truly had it . . . Damn, is it hard to do without! LIFE LESSON #2

To be continued . . .

One thought on “Post: Sex vs. Intimacy (part 1)

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