sex diaries

The Student Whose Boyfriend Thinks She’s Monogamous

Photo-Illustration: James Gallagher

A woman managing school, nannying, and several men (including her boyfriend): 25, in a relationship, New York. 


10 a.m. I start moving but don’t get up till noon. If there isn’t an actual reason to get up, like an appointment, a deadline, or work, I usually just don’t. The medication I’m on makes me super drowsy in the morning, which can really mess with my life. Sleeping until noon while being a full-time student and working just doesn’t add up.

1 p.m. C texted me a whole novel last night, which boosted my mood tremendously. We met before the pandemic, had a good time but reconnected again just recently. He’s one of my Bumble gems — a rare, deep, meaningful connection I treasure a lot. I think of myself as a connection-collector. This is probably why I’m polyamorous. The only problem with that is my monogamous boyfriend whom I deeply love and will probably end up with.

7 p.m. Since my classes went remote and I transitioned to “stay-at-home girlfriend,” I do everything at home. Now I’m cooking pesto pasta and waiting for my boyfriend to come home from work so we can have dinner and watch TV together — we met two years ago in line for a nightclub and moved in together at the beginning of the year. It’s the standard couple routine, which I always made fun of and never wanted. Of course it is nice and comfy but I’m fighting falling into this trap of comfortable stagnation, this routine that you keep up for 50 to 60 years until you suddenly die. The fears of settling down are creeping up hard recently.

10 p.m. C is very spiritual and into signs and stuff like that. He (correctly) guessed that I was a Libra, just like him. He compliments me on the way I talk, write, and act as a person. We understand each other so well that we can have debates about ideas over text. I reply to him, telling him how warm and hugged he makes me feel.


9 a.m. It’s therapy time! I really like my therapist. I joke around a lot, but he gets me to be vulnerable. Therapy is very interesting, at times very weird, obviously very emotional but what people might not know is that it’s actual work.

12 a.m. I did some reading for class, going to go to sleep a bit earlier tonight. Recently, I started listening to a meditation app to fall asleep and it’s amazing. A super calm, vaguely British male voice describes settings in nature and guides you through a relaxing exercise. Way more fun than lying awake while thoughts keep flooding my brain.


10 a.m. First day of (online) classes. I have mixed feelings.

1 p.m. I get a text from A. We’re planning our first friendship date for tomorrow. We met a couple of months ago. He was very reserved and cold at first but on our second date, I brought molly, which he’d never done before. We had an amazing night. First, we went on a walk at midnight around his Brooklyn neighborhood. If it was possible, I would live on molly 24/7. When you’re on it, you can have sex forever. It becomes a whole experience — there is not really a beginning or end. Mentally you start fucking way before the clothes come off and the connection with the other ends when that person physically leaves the next morning. Everything in between might be described as sleeping with each other but it is so much more.

8 p.m. Boyfriend is home. He’s finishing up things for work on his laptop next to me on the couch. Most people can’t understand me being polyamorous while having this perfect boyfriend who loves me so deeply. I definitely don’t deserve him.

I told him I was poly when we first got together. He said he could live with it, but I knew he couldn’t. It went well for two years because he thought I wasn’t seeing anyone else; it was sort of a don’t ask, don’t tell situation. But then several months ago he found out I hadn’t stopped seeing other people and got really upset. I told him I’d quit the lifestyle right away, but I’ve still been seeing people — albeit way fewer.


12 p.m. Classes are going well so far. Some professors I like more than others. Only a few students have their cameras on so the mood is weird. I’m finishing up my last year of a bachelor’s degree in psychology and loving it. Hopefully I get to go to grad school.

2 p.m. I’m grabbing coffee with a friend in between lectures. I don’t know how I would make it without her.

A didn’t text for two days. But he told me beforehand that he would be very busy with a project for work. I’m still a bit hurt. I’m supposed to see him tonight for drinks. I consider every person in my life valuable and all sex good in its own way. That said, A is insanely good in bed. Definitely top five, maybe even three.

Before our plans tonight, I ask him directly if he wants to sleep together. He confirms my assumption that he doesn’t want to sleep with me anymore — he just wants to be friends. I get over being hurt rather quickly because it feels so great to get told that someone wants me just for who I am.

9 p.m. I walk to the outdoors bar where A is already waiting. I’m way more nervous than I thought I would be, but I’m also excited to see him. I’m too nervous to eat but manage to pound three gin-and-tonics while he’s finishing his first beer. (He is a slow drinker.) We talk about his dad, my boyfriend, his work, my studies, his girls, my guys. In between, feeling the drinks, my eyes keep wandering to his lips while he’s talking. I can’t look away, they’re just so kissable. I snap out of it and realize I wasn’t listening to what he was saying.

12 a.m. We take the train home, he lives only two stops away from me. I’m finally in bed. A bit tipsy, very happy. The night was a success and C texted. We text a little back and forth. First time in a while that there is some sexy talk involved, pictures are sent. We can’t wait to see each other but it just never seems to work out. He is basically always working and when he is free, I’m already busy with something. We want to try for this weekend. A wishes me good night.


10 a.m. God, college in the U.S. can be really weird at times. We’re supposed to watch an episode of Rick and Morty for a class. I feel bad for my parents paying tuition for that but I also feel so blessed to be able to get my A’s here while I would’ve barely made it in at a college in Germany, where I was raised. (I came to New York as an au pair when I was 20.)

2 p.m. On the way to my new nannying job. My schedule used to be work and nanny and perfection during the week. And during the weekends, that’s where the fun lived, including drugs, sex, and EDM. I’m pretty extreme about both parts. When I made the decision to move in with my boyfriend, I slowly stopped seeking out new guys and only kept in touch with the ones I already had. The pandemic did the rest.

8 p.m. The kids are fed, showered, and in PJs. I truly love working with kids, especially on the days when they’re in a great mood and cooperate. P texts, and asks how I am. I’ve seen him occasionally since last summer, but not recently. We liked to talk German, get high, and write. Then I would cook for us and we’d watch TV together. I’m not attracted so much as I enjoy his company.


11 a.m. My school-nanny-dating life might seem simple to some but I’m loving it. I don’t have to worry about being in the real workplace yet and get to enjoy so much of my life and the city.

2 p.m. My boyfriend and I are on our Saturday walk in Central Park. If there is nothing better to do, we walk the big loop. We share his headphones, take turns choosing songs, and talk and laugh. It’s so peaceful and wholesome.

5 p.m. On the way back, we grab drinks and appetizers at a little restaurant. Sitting outside on one of those little tables, I realize that we’re living the life. I love the city so much, maybe more than ever.

8 p.m. Dinner, movie, a bit of smoking, board games. C texts that he is thinking of me. I love these nights with my boyfriend, so I’m not sure what to do with the text. I’m a couple-y person, love going on hikes together and am excited for the day that I’ll finally swallow my ego and go to a couples’ cooking class. But at the same time, settling down scares the shit out of me.


10 a.m. Lazy Sunday morning. Boyfriend’s turn to get bagels.

4 p.m. He’s watching sports so I’m working on an assignment for class. I miss going dancing. But somehow I do like this current reality too. It’s nice to calm down and enjoy the city without going 60 mph every day.

7 p.m. I meet up with my best friend at her new apartment for gin-and-tonic talks. I’m saying good-bye to my seemingly endless summer as school and work are back. I tried to fit in as much fun and activity as possible this week but now I’m exhausted. I’m looking forward to spending time by myself — and with the boyfriend of course.

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The Student Whose Boyfriend Thinks She’s Monogamous