sex diaries

The Polyamorous Woman Coming Off 6 Months of Celibacy

Photo-Illustration: James Gallagher

This week, a woman Tindering in Holland but missing her on-again, off-again boyfriend in Brooklyn: 25, Clinton Hill, film intern, in an open relationship.


8:51 a.m. FUCKING CHURCH BELLS. I wake up to the sound, far earlier than I intended. I’m on vacation in Holland with my father; we’re staying in a suburb just outside of Amsterdam. I begrudgingly get up and check my phone. I redownloaded Tinder last night, so I check my matches and see a message from a Dutch man. He immediately mentions his boner. Ugh. This is the reason I deleted this app in the first place. I screenshot it and send it to Dick.

Dick (what my friends and I call him) and I have been officially dating for about a month; I’m queer and poly so we’re ethically nonmonogamous. We’re very happy right now, but the beginning of our relationship was super messy. I’d been celibate for the first six months of 2019 — I had been having a lot of meaningless sex and finding myself trying to force feelings for people I didn’t care about. Then came Dick. We met at graduate school. He found out I was celibate and made it clear he enjoyed tempting me. After a month of flirting, I relented.

Then a woman he’d been flirting with found out, and caused drama, flirting aggressively and nonstop with him and trying to make me feel like shit about myself. He cut ties with her and apologized profusely.
We were good again for a couple days, before he went on a date with another woman and claimed to be in love with her. Two weeks later, that all blew up too and he came crawling back. Against my better judgement I gave him a third chance — and it’s been wonderful so far.

I don’t expect him to respond right away but he does. It’s 3 a.m. in NY but he’s having a bit of insomnia. It’s nice to talk to him first thing in the morning.

9:45 a.m. I chat a bit with Rik, a dude I matched with on Tinder the night before. He’s really engaged and eager. I wish it didn’t turn me off but it does. Still, we make a date for Thursday night. He’s cute. It’s fine.

12:05 p.m. I send a picture from the KattenKabinet museum to Dick. It’s a young woman with her legs open and a cat sitting in her lap. He and I had discussed him taking nude pictures of me recently and I suggest that this is the kind of picture I’d like. He replies: “Come over.”

10:00p.m. I send a picture of myself in front of a windmill to Dick and head into The Lion King with my dad.


11:30 a.m. We get a late start after all of yesterday’s activities.

1:00 p.m. I’m determined to have pannenkoeken, Dutch pancakes, so I find a place and we head into the city.

1:30 p.m. There are no queer women here! I swipe through maybe six before Tinder tells me to change my settings. Back to “Everyone,” I guess. I have no idea why I’m still swiping. Tonight is the only night I’ll be able to go on a date (my father is going to a salsa party — he loves Latin dance) so Rik has won the proverbial Tinder lottery.

2:47 p.m. Rik texts to confirm our date and location, which means I have to let Dick know.

5:45 p.m. Dick responds “Be safe; have fun.”

7:00 p.m. Dinner with Dad before I head out to meet Rik. I lie to my dad about where I’m going but give him Rik’s number just in case. No sense in explaining I’m pursuing casual sex in a foreign country, but no sense in being reckless either.

8:00 p.m. Rik is even hotter in person, like a Dutch Chris Hemsworth, but has terrible politics. He’s one of those “political correctness is ruining us all” types, and it takes everything in me not to launch into a political feud. A year ago I would have fucked him in the bathroom and felt awful about it afterward. Tonight, I have three drinks and leave before the last train with a few images of him for my spank bank. The memory of him lifting up his shirt to show me that not just his beard was red: delicious. I’m sexually unsatisfied but proud of myself.


11:15 p.m. Another late start. I pack while I wait for my dad to come back from the gym. I’m sad that I have to go back to work soon but I miss family and my cat.

1:00 p.m. Dad and I decide to grab breakfast and head to a castle before going to the Van Gogh Museum later.

5:30 p.m. The Van Gogh Museum is amazing. I start to tear up at “Almond Flowers” and I’m fully crying by the time I get to “Tree Roots.” I think of all the people I love, the creatives who despite their many struggles are innovating and transforming their mediums.

8:30 p.m. I head to dinner with dad and one of his colleagues, Leo. I’ve always had a bit of a crush on him. I let him and my father talk shop and just watch his lips move.


10:27 a.m. Beginning the long journey home. I made a point not to text Dick yesterday, and I wake up to a “Thinking of you.” So many millennial men get away with romantic apathy. I decided during my celibacy that if someone wasn’t willing to pursue me with the same attention I pursued them with, they weren’t worth it. I won’t give Dick cookies for basic relationship etiquette but I’m happy to see it.

5:30 p.m. My flight was delayed, but I finally make it to Glasgow. I have a 21-hour layover but I’m using it to get some much-needed alone time in a hotel. I call both my parents, and then Dick. The moment I hear his voice I realize how much I miss him. We talk for two hours before he insists I go feed myself.

10:00 p.m. Taking a bath at the hotel. I call Dick. He is immediately up for phone sex, and I let him narrate while I touch myself. He’s a great storyteller. He takes care to describe the very specific things I like him to do to me: playing with my nipples, pushing himself against me when he’s hard, eating me out from behind. He details intricately how he would go down on me, what he would do with his tongue and lips. He’s truly amazing at head; these days it’s often what I think I about when I’m masturbating. I haven’t masturbated without a vibrator in a while so it takes some time but I come hard and loud.


12:23 p.m. Final leg of my trip. I send a quick “Boarded” to my parents and Dick. Dick is working all weekend, and I’m bummed I can’t have my usual sex on demand.

2:12 p.m. Free wine and Aquaman. Everyone in this movie is hot. Good way to end my trip.

3:45 p.m. Two heavy pours and a lot of half-naked Jason Momoa later and I’m sexting Dick with the free-airplane Wi-Fi. He tells me he’s touching himself and I want to ask for a picture but I don’t think we’re there yet.

5:30 p.m. I’m home! I hang with my mother and brother, dispensing presents and unpacking.

7:30 p.m. Dick calls me because his bike broke and he’s walking back from the Rockaways in 100-degree heat. I talk him through getting home safely. It takes all my reasonable brain cells not to jump in a cab and go get him.

11:30 p.m. Once he’s home safe we talk all night. Before I go to sleep I tell him “I think I really like you.” He responds, “I’m grateful for that. I like you too — really.” It feels like we’re both avoiding the obvious words but neither of us will go there just yet.


8:00 a.m. Dick texts to let me know he’s alive. I want to play hooky and go see him but he has work today, too.

4:00 p.m. Wow I hate this job. I’m working at a film-accounting firm for the summer. I thought I’d learn about a new part of the industry while making a decent wage, but the experience has plateaued. There’s often nothing for me to do, and I resent the 9-5 structure. According to my mom that’s normal office life, but that only makes me more annoyed. Be better, American workplace!

7:00 p.m. I get caught in a torrential downpour on my way to meet a friend for dinner. She actually introduced me to Dick but stopped talking to him when all the drama of our relationship went down. I haven’t seen her in a month and I need to, among other catch-up things, let her know that Dick and I are dating.

9:00 p.m. All things considered, she took the news pretty well. She doesn’t think it’s a good idea but won’t interfere.

10:00 p.m. Texting Dick. We make a plan to see each other tomorrow. Yay! I miss him so much!


12:00 p.m. I’m in a bad mood at work. It’s become clear to me that I have to quit my job. I text Dick. He tries to be encouraging but admits it’s hard to support me via text.

5:25 p.m. I leave work 45 minutes early and head to Dick’s.

6:30 p.m. One hour and several train delays later I make it to Dick’s. He leads me upstairs and kisses me tenderly. He asks me about my job and why I want to quit. He asks if I want advice or if I just need a sounding board. We talk for about an hour; me laying on his chest, wrapped in his arms, talking through my stress.

When I feel talked out, he pulls me up on top of him. I straddle him kissing him while he teases me over my underwear. I ask him to get on top of me, but he slides below me instead easing me into sitting on his face. I ride his mouth until I come. Only then does his climb on top of me. He fucks me fast and hard, and comes twice.

8:00 p.m. He eats dinner while I watch Veronica Mars. He finishes and starts to eat me out from behind. I close the computer and when he’s finished I climb on top of him again. This time I tie his hands above his head and tease him with the lube I just bought. His eyes get wide as I play with him. It feels good to be in control. I untie him and we have more marathon sex before I fall asleep.

11:30 p.m. I should not have fallen asleep. It took all my will power to get out of that bed. I would stay but I have to go to work tomorrow and I don’t have any work clothes. I kiss Dick goodbye.

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The Polyamorous Woman Coming Off 6 Months of Celibacy