I’m not sure how to broach this

It’s getting to be summertime, which means that summer Fridays will be starting for me soon. Also, this weekend being Memorial Day weekend, I have Monday off, which I’ve been looking forward to for months.

On the summer Friday front, I have my first one this week. I mentioned to Lora and Jon that it might be nice if we all got together and did a little day drinking. Maybe invited a few friends, made a thing of it. Lora mentioned having a facial planned for that day. Jon mentioned that they have therapy that afternoon, so drinking first definitely wouldn’t be a good idea. That, I can see. Nonetheless, my heart sank a little that when I FINALLY have off some time and can spend it with Jon (or Jon and Lora, in a group setting), he’s not free.

It was also curious that Lora didn’t mention therapy, but whatevs. Maybe she’s embarrassed. Maybe she would go drinking if it wasn’t for the facial. Maybe the facial is more important to her. Maybe I should overthink things less.

Maybe flying unicorns will caper out of my butt.

Anyways, on the Memorial Day front, Lora mentioned to me that she *might* get Memorial Day off, and her attitude was basically “and then we can spend the day together!”, whereas my heart sank when I heard that news. Because I’m trying to spend significantly less time with Lora, not more.

More importantly (or at least, just as importantly), I was hoping that Lora was working because the last time Jon and I had a day off together was…several weeks ago. We have seen so incredibly little of each other that my heart feels cold and shriveled and unconnected to him. As per the usual lately, this week, Jon is off both of the days that Lora is off, but he’s working the entire day (10am-2am) for one of the days I’m off, so I’m only going to be able to see him for one day. Which is way more than I’ve seen him for the past few weeks. It just would be really nice (since he’s not working Memorial Day) if Lora didn’t have the day off, so that Jon and I could actually have two days off together.

If Lora is off on Memorial Day, then I’m going to be tempted to do something (anything, really) on my own (or maybe with friends), because I really don’t want to spend a full day with her. It’s actually, specifically the thing that I want the least in the world right now.

What I don’t know how to broach is that I can’t think of a tactful way to tell Lora herself that I want to spend less time with her. My plan was (and still is) to generally be home less often. Also to see my friends more, which dovetails nicely with being home less often. I’m not sure if there is any good reason to tell Lora that part of the reason I’m home less often is that I do want to see less of her. I don’t want to never see her – ok, I do want to never see her, but I’m willing to continue to see her, albeit less of her, to see how she does with therapy and if it helps her to become less of an abusive, controlling, unpleasant person. If those things changed, then I’ll be way more willing to be around her.

Tangentially – there is an issue that we continue to run into. When Lora and Jon spend time together, they usually spend it in the little bedroom, which is Lora’s domain, and also has a couch, so it can be a dual sort of bedroom/little lounge room. When Jon and I spend time together, it’s in the living room, unless we want to have sex (then we head to the bedroom). Earlier this week, Jon and I were watching TV and not doing anything particular intimate, and Lora asked if she could join us. I mainly said “yes” because it feels really weird to say “no” especially when Jon and I are in a “public” room. It’s frustrating, because when Lora and Jon are spending time outside the little bedroom (like if they’re cooking), I assume that they’re specifically spending time together unless they say otherwise – meaning, they volunteer otherwise – I don’t ask, because I know how it feels to feel pressured into saying “yes” when you want to say “no”.  But if Jon and I are just on the couch watching TV, and she asks if she’s interrupting us, it feels odd, because we’re not…doing a specific, couples-based thing. I don’t know what to do about that. Should I speak up? Is it shitty to say “no, I’d really like to have private time with Jon” when we’re in a public part of the apartment? I don’t know how to handle that.

As I was writing this, Lora texted me today to say to say that I should take Friday off so that we could go out drinking Thursday night and get bombed. At some point (probably not over text), I definitely need to get through to her that I don’t ever drink to get bombed, and that I don’t particularly want to be around people who are drinking to get bombed. Also, I’m never going to deliberately take off a work day so that I can stay out late getting shit-faced. If I’m going to take a precious day off of work, it’s going to be for a better reason than pre-planning on having a hangover.

That is one of those things that I try not to be judgmental about (or not enormously judgmental about), but it’s never going to be my thing, and never going to be something that I want to do with Lora – or with anybody. Jon once mentioned to me that because Lora didn’t have the typical American college experience, with living in a dorm and getting fucked up, that she’s trying to capture some of that now. While I did live in a dorm for part of college, I never had a “let’s get shit-faced” mentality, I didn’t hang around the people who had that mentality in college, and I don’t want to hang around it now.

This is probably in part because one of my first jobs as a college student was as a cocktail waitress. I spent nearly every Friday and Saturday night at work. More importantly, I spent every Friday and Saturday night watching people come in excited and hopeful for the evening (probably looking for love, or at least a hook-up), start drinking, have alcohol-fueled dramas, watched people get shot down (sometimes nicely, sometimes cruelly), watched people drink excessively to cover up their pain, watched them fight from drinking too much, watched them end up having half-sobbing, half-screaming confrontations, watched people barf from drinking too much, watched people panic when they got their tab to sign off on, and more. Really, there is no better way to convince a person that drinking for any reason other an enjoying the taste of alcohol than having them work as a cocktail waitress or a bartender for a few years. Between that and my parent’s lax feelings about alcohol (I was permitted to try alcohol during holidays as a kid, and once I was in the mid-teens, I was permitted the occasional beer or glass of wine), I saw absolutely no reason ever to get shitfaced, and about a million reasons not to.

My problems with a “let’s get shitfaced” mentality aside, at the very least, it would definitely be worthwhile to communicate to Lora that I have zero interest in getting wasted, so when she’s in that mood, she should definitely count me out. But as for the larger question of if it’s worthwhile to say anything to Lora about wanting to spend less time with her or just going about planning things so that happens, but it appears to be an organic thing, I don’t know what to do. I hate the amount of dishonestly we have between us. It would generally suck for trying to build a relationship with another person, but knowing that it’s coming from a place of Jon (and/or me) believing that she can’t handle the truth about certain things (like how much animosity I have towards her for her abuse of Jon) it’s just extra-special shitty. At least one of my new boundaries is specifically engineered to start to eliminate that dishonesty – if I’m speaking my mind to her more often, then that should slowly dispel the dishonesty.

So maybe that’s the answer; I won’t come out and directly say that I want to see less of her. I will continue to make plans in ways that cause us to spend less time together. I will also continue to be more honest with her about things like my disinterest in going out and getting drunk on purpose. If she does want to go out and get hammered, then she can do that with Jon, or find some other people to do it with. Just not me.


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polyamorist, cat-lover, hopeless optimist when I'm not being a firm realist.

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