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A.J.

February 1999

Hey everybody, I'm glad to know people made it back to my column for yet another edition. My weekend has not been the best in the world, but as always things are on the upswing. The focus of this article is not going to be Brett, who of course will get some attention, but I'm more interested in talking about something else entirely.

Brett:

Well if you read my last article, you know Brett is my new boyfriend. Things are going well with us, although my personal paranoia of anybody I'm with is rearing its ugly head. I'm so dead set against making the same mistakes I made with Hazel and Randall, that I'm creating a whole new set of mistakes. The fact that Brett is so awesome makes that twice as frustrating. I'm really tired of losing everybody I care about because of being stupid about relationships. The only person who has really stood by me throughout is my best friend Alison.

Ali ... .

Wow, I don't think I've ever more than mention this bitch. She's probably the only female I can ever say that I truly loved. (I don't think my mother counts since I really can't stand to be around her for more than short periods of time.) We met about three years ago, and she was the first person I ever came out to. Since then, rather than growing apart as most friends do, we have only been growing closer. There are things about me that nobody else in the world knows that she knows. The fact that she doesn't turn from me knowing all of my dirt is probably the greatest source of stability in my life. My life has fallen apart so many times that I question everything's validity. I'm scared to put my weight on the ice ... I don't want to fall through again. Ali ... I know she's there ... no matter what. It gives me the courage to take that risk again ... it lets me brave the ice knowing I won't drown. I don't think that there has ever been anybody I cared about more deeply and thoroughly than her.

Just to give you an example, Saturday night Brett and I were going to hang out. He had a friend come in from LA, and they were supposed to hang out too. The truth of the matter was that Brett just went to bed, got my message after I'd already gone to bed. My message was pretty petulant, I admit that ... .but he responds saying that "I am going out ... but we really need to talk ... .ok?" To my mind, in this situation, "going out" means going out to hang out with his friend or go clubbing. And "we really need to talk ... " is a big fat red flag telling me that something is wrong. Of course my paranoia ran wild with me, and it was only a faint whisper of rationality that kept me from going crazy. Is it any wonder that when I told Ali about all this she just started to laugh? I mean I'm a total fruitcake! I'm not a drama queen, but for some reason with Brett ... I keep waiting for him to disappear. I guess Randall's mostly responsible for that. He disappeared on me pretty suddenly.

Ali knows all of that ... she helped me to order my thoughts ... .to figure my life out. She has been doing that since the start. I would do anything for her in a heartbeat, and I know that feeling is mutual ... .because she's done so much for me I couldn't begin to pay her back. If she hadn't been there this summer, I honestly believe I'd be in an institution. I am not kidding ... I was on the verge as it was. <<Oh yeah, bitch, no transfers next month like we had this month ... .you know what I'm talking about ... I mean feet are fine ... but I have to draw a line somewhere>>

"Open Relationships" and "Playing" versus CHEATING ...

It came to my attention that there are three possible categories for a relationship to be in: closed, open, and open to playing. Since I'd never heard of a "play" category, I'm going to talk about it. This is how it was described to me:

"Well AJ, I'll never cheat, but there's nothing wrong with playing," by which this person meant some kissing, grabbing, getting naked, and climaxing with another (but SUPER attractive) person who is not your boyfriend. I wonder, am I just too conservative in my belief that in a relationship that is cheating? In defense of the person proposing the idea, he does genuinely care about the person he's with, but I still question the logic that goes into it.

When I say I am somebody's boyfriend, that's the way it is. It means that they have me first in body. Even if I don't "love" somebody, my body is only for them if I have made a commitment to them. Isn't that what it means when you say you are somebody's boyfriend? That "I am taken, look elsewhere for your fun." Right?

I'm the first to admit I'm a prude (not really) when it comes to sexuality, but really, come on what's the difference between playing and cheating? Does cheating prerequisite some sort of "feeling"? So it's cheating only if you like the person your are fooling around with? Or maybe its cheating once something more than just "touching" comes into the picture? That doesn't really work, because really what's the difference between kissing face and kissing something else? I mean either way it's the same sort of skin! And then if it's okay to kiss, what's wrong with maybe taking it in your mouth? If that's okay, then what's the big deal if you just say screw it and go all the way and have sex with the person?!

I think my friend is wrong. I do see "playing" as cheating. Any boyfriend who agrees with me and agrees to let him do it is either: 1) stupid, 2) deluded, 3) masochistic, or 4) in love with him and afraid of losing him. Any other categories y'all can come up with? No offense to my friend's boyfriend or anything, I don't care to speculate which category the guy falls into.

Closing words:

Well my friends, this is yet another month in the dance: I write, you write, I reply, and write again. If you care to take a hoof, please write me at soulseer@cyberdude.com. I can also be reached on AOL under the screen name Uchcgo19. I'm always happy to chat, but beware I tend to leave the computer on, so don't be offended if I don't reply your IM immediately. Best wishes this Valentine's Day, and I hope everybody has somebody to share the day with ... because let's face it, despite over sentimentalization, it sucks to be alone on Valentine's Day.


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