My Booty Call Is Holding Me Back

What if you dont want to cut off your side piece?

There's this guy.  We've been casually sleeping together on and off for NINE YEARS!  Never dated, pretty much just sex with an occasionally friendly text here and there.  Not  friends, but I'd say there's a mutual respect.  I've only had sex with him between boyfriends, but he has a long-term girlfriend whom he lives with (estimating they've been together for 3 years).  He now lives in California (I'm in NYC),  saw him when I was there for work and sometimes we connect when comes to New York.  He's the quintessential "unavailable guy" (even before he had a girlfriend) but I like the sex and the fun of it.  He agrees.  I even know he saw another girl before me when he was in New York a few months back.  For all I know, there's a harem, but I don't care.  It's not on me, I'm not the one in a relationship.  Is that terrible?

I know I should quit it, but it feels safe and NYC is a scary dating place, especially for casual sex.  My therapist says I'll never be able to move forward and have the right kind of relationship until I drop it.   


First of all, this sounds like a lot more than casual sex — plus, I highly question if you are really having ‘fun’!  A nine year fuck fling with a man on the other side of the country who has a girlfriend and possibly other concubines to boot? Sounds more like hell to me. And this whole ‘it’s not on you’ thing? Quite the contrary. Karmically, cosmically and psychically, I really believe that getting involved with an already betrothed man will come back to bite you in the ass. The sisterhood is small. We’ve all got to be good to each other.

Okay. There are about four million variables getting in the way of you entering an actual honest relationship with this guy or anyone else. I know that New York City is a scary place to date, and that the sex with Mr. Side is good, but it sounds like you’re using these two things as an excuse to not move forward. It’s time to allow yourself to be vulnerable, get your ass up on Tinder and take the humble, embarrassing action of looking for a partner who could actually fulfill you emotionally. What you’re doing now is nothing more drama and distraction. It will never go anywhere.

I speak from experience here. I’ve been in love with many an unavailable man in my day, many of whom had serious girlfriends. I spent a lot of time in those relationships trying to figure out the magic formula to get them to leave their partner and love me. In fact, right before I met my husband i was involved in this crazy intriguing emotional affair with a married writer.  We had an intense romance that existed only over email and it became all-consuming and strangely satisfying.  In hindsight, though, I realize it was all one big psychic cockblock. Newsflash: he never left his wife for me. Makes me sad to think about all the time I wasted wondering if/when/how the miracle would happen.

I believe that during the course of our lifetimes, we are all allotted a certain amount of energy.  It’s a fixed amount — emotional, sexual, and romantic.  Life takes energy, work takes energy, friends, family… in order to maintain and grow your relationships, you must invest a massive  of energy into all of them.  sounds to me like you are pouring 85% of your energy into a relationship that is going to yield no return. It sounds depleting and exhausting and all consuming.

Why not press pause and sort out how you got yourself into this entanglement in the first place.  My guess? You’re lonely, scared, bored, and freaked out about how to move forward in a your life. Mr. Side Piece is giving you everything you need to remain in stasis. Here’s my suggestion: detach from him with love. Send him a short concise email telling him that you need to take some time to focus on yourself. Wish him luck and ask that he not contact you anymore. Then take ninety days off of communication with him starting now.  When the urge to reach out arises, pay attention to it and funnel the energy into something else.  Create a vision board, call your childhood BF, write a letter to your grandma, volunteer at a nursing home, walk across the Williamsburg bridge, bake banana muffins, floss your teeth, you get this gist. Take actions that fill you with meaning and self-esteem. Be gentle and kind to yourself. Dive deep, do the work, have faith not fear, the only way out is through. Real love and freedom is waiting on the other side. Once when I was crying to my Mom about how sad and lonely I was in my twenties, she wrote in a sharpie on a tablecloth: you will get where you need to go, ripped it out and shoved it in my purse. Today I repeat the same words to you.

Email me in 90 days and tell me how it went down.