Dater X: Dating Two Guys At Once Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up To Be

“It’s like in ‘Rushmore’ when Bill Murray cannonballs into the pool,” I said to Goldilocks, as we sat on a park bench watching a middle-aged man run through a field of sunbathers, barely noticing that he was almost stepping on people’s heads.

“I’ve never seen that movie,” Goldilocks said.

“Wait, I thought you said it was your favorite,” I responded, specifically remembering a conversation we’d had about the Wes Anderson classic a week ago.

“Nope, never seen it,” he said, shaking his head. “And that honor would belong to ‘Ghostbusters.’”

I laughed, but also felt vaguely crazy. And then I remembered the “Rushmore” conversation. It wasn’t with Goldilocks. It was with Band T-Shirt—the other guy I’m dating. Oops.

While I’m very much liking that I’m not showering all of my attention on one person and that things are proceeding slowly with both, I have to wonder if this indifference comes from the fact that I’m splitting my energy between people.

A few weeks back, I decided that—rather than jump full-throttle into dating a guy, get attached before I really know him, and then feel extremely disappointed if things don’t work out—I wanted to date multiple people, take time to get to know each of them, and put sex on the backburner until I felt like I couldn’t wait any longer with one of them. I’ve been doing just that. And so I’ve been seeing Goldilocks and Band T-Shirt simultaneously. But rather than it being “hallelujah, it’s raining men,” I’m finding that dating multiple guys feels complicated. Not to mention oddly detached.

Let’s start with Goldilocks. He’s the one who I messaged through OKCupid right after The Juggler disappeared. I was instantly interested when he popped up in my Quiver—in addition to being good-looking with a head of wavy blond hair, he also has a cool job and great taste in music, and wrote several lines in his profile that got a chuckle out of me. Right after I sent him an email, I noticed that he had messaged me—and his email made no reference to any of the questions I’d asked.

A minute later, I got another message from him. “Looks like you beat me to sending the first email. You win,” he wrote.

I have a weakness for this kind of meeting. I instantly imagined us telling the story at parties of how we emailed each other at the exact same moment. Ah, fate.

Our first date was good. We met for drinks, and talked for two hours before taking a 30-minute walk to taste what he dubbed “the best pizza in New York.” It was delicious. And I liked his low-key vibe and sarcastic sense of humor. Yet, for some reason at the end of the night, when he kissed me, I just wasn’t into it. Technically, he was a good kisser—soft and slow—but with no lust coming from my end, his tongue felt like a dental tool in my mouth. I pulled away graciously and said goodnight.

I felt pretty much the exact same way on the first date with Band T-Shirt. He is a friend of a friend who I met at my cousin’s party, also right after The Juggler faded out. When I met him on the street for our first date, I was pleasantly surprised to see him in a Smiths T-shirt—one of my favorite bands. (I know, how “500 Days of Summer.”) We bowled two games and then went out for drinks. We stayed out until 3 a.m., talking and joking around. But again, at the end of the night, when he went in for the kiss, I turned my head.

I’ve gone out with Goldilocks three times now and Band T-Shirt twice. And while I have fun with both of them and appreciate both of their company, I just don’t feel that into either. I don’t think about either of them unless I get a text or email from them. I’ve barely mentioned them both to my friends. I don’t feel giddy at the idea of going out with either of them again. I’m not fantasizing about ripping either of their clothes off.

I’ve been thinking a lot about whether this is because I’m dating two people.

While I’m very much liking that I’m not showering all of my attention on one person and that things are proceeding slowly with both, I have to wonder if this indifference comes from the fact that I’m splitting my energy between people.

Or is it just because neither of these guys is my Green Zebra?

So what do you guys think? Do I cut things off with both of them because I’m not feeling a real connection with either? Or do I keep dating because I’m having fun until I have a better sense of who they are? I know that things can change and so far I haven’t seen anything I don’t like. After all, I wasn’t that into either of my two super long-term boyfriends after our first few meetings—it took time for feelings develop.

But then again, if someone wasn’t thinking about me throughout the week, wasn’t looking forward to seeing me again, and compared kissing me to going to the dentist—would I really want them to keep dating me?

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