So whose turn is it? Yours or mine? When it comes to same sex relationships, how do you know who makes the first move? Who takes the role of the aggressor? Who takes the role of the one who’s laid back? These are all questions that are very difficult to ask in same sex relationships. Some may say the person who does the penetration is the aggressor. But that is not always the case. Both men and women take on different roles in relationships and traditional concepts don’t always align with what we expect. When it comes to modern day relationships, who makes the first move?
You guys remember Jonathan from “Where To Meet A Good Man”, right? Well, there’s a little bit more to this story I wanted to share with you. But then again, isn’t there always more to any story? After taking my dating advice, he scored some really distinguished gentlemen. But when he did strike gold, there was just something about the one that got away that really didn’t sit well with Jonathan. Jonathan described Nathan as “a Lance Gross type”. Nathan was a corporate attorney and had a nice flat on the Riverfront. He was only 38 years old, so he was just about as prime as you can get. He found Jonathan to be very attractive and admired how timid and demure he came across in his demeanor. Nathan was definitely an aggressive guy. This became a safe zone for Jonathan—a zone he’d later regret.
It was a brisk, fall night in The District. Jonathan and Nathan decided to take an evening stroll on Pennsylvania Ave after a decadent Italian meal at the couple’s favorite restaurant, Fiola. There were a few thoughts that ran through Nathan’s mind the entire day. The evening walk provided the perfect transition to discuss what weighed so heavily on his mind. “Babe, let me talk to you for a second.”, Nathan inquiries. “Sure.”, Jonathan responds. “We’ve been dating for a while now and I don’t know. I mean…I really like you and you’re cool and all, but…I feel like you’re not putting in the work when it comes to you making an effort to spend time with me.”, Nathan implies with a sense of disappointment. In a sense of shock and disbelief, Jonathan inquired, “What do you mean? I don’t understand.” Nathan looked Jonathan into his eyes, grabbed his hand, and sat down on the nearest bench. “I feel like…and I actually had to run each of these events in my head over and over, but…each time we hung out, went to dinner, went to the movies, I came over to your place, not one did you ask me to do anything or take any initiative to plan anything. You never asked me if I wanted to be taken out. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m not expecting you to pull the weight all the time. But it is something I’ve noticed. I just don’t want to be taken for granted.” Nathan explained. Jonathan felt horrible. He immediately apologized and told Nathan he’d plan a special night for the both of them. He desperately wanted to make it up to him.
“Hello?!”, I answered. “I need your help!”, Jonathan exclaimed. I replied in an awakened voice, “Jonathan, it’s 8:17a. How can you have a crisis already?!”, I inquired. After Jonathan told me his dilemma, I felt his sense of urgency. Apparently, this was a really big deal. He needed help planning an evening to spend with someone he was head over heels with. “NOPE!”, I replied. “WHAT?! WHY NOT?!”, he yelled. “Listen, J, you know I love you like a brotha. But, THIS IS YOUR MOMENT TO SHINE. If you’re getting to know him, you have to show him what you are capable of. Asking someone else to do the work for you, in any capacity, is not what this guy is looking for when he wants to see what lengths you will invite him into your world. Find that and bring it to the evening you guys will share. It’s not that complicated”, I advised. When Nathan arrived at Jonathan’s place, he was met with disappointment and heartbreak. Because of the enormity of the expectations Jonathan faced to plan an evening, he didn’t plan anything. Jonathan explained to Nathan he had no idea what to do. He wasn’t familiar with the city and didn’t want to call Nathan because he’d still have a hand in planning it. Nathan stared Jonathan into his eyes and kissed him on this forehead. He knew after leaving Jonathan’s apartment that evening, he would never see nor hear from him—ever again! Making the first move can sometimes be kryptonite for both the aggressor and receiver. When we get too comfortable in our roles, we don’t give our partners the opportunity rise to the occasion to bring the balance we need in our dating lives. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but a necessary evil nonetheless. A lesson that will teach us more about ourselves than it does about whom we date.