PQ 5.2 — What needs do I have from my partners, in terms of time, emotional availability, commitment, communication and intimacy?

2 small wooden toys - they look like simplified version of people. they are "standing" close together
Image by JD Hancock / CC BY

PQ 5.2 — What needs do I have from my partners, in terms of time, emotional availability, commitment, communication and intimacy?


Sometimes I think life would be easier if I had a fixed idea of what a “partner” is.

But I don’t.

I look back on all the people that I’ve known and loved, and there’s no set way they all were. No sameness. Even if I focus strictly on the subset that I would consider “successful,” clear patterns fail to emerge.

I wrote recently of what tends to make me feel intimacy in relationships.

These days, I have less time and emotional availability than I have had at some other times. I’m working a lot and busy. I’m also feeling relatively emotionally secure and validated by my ongoing relationship with Skyspook, strong friendships with many, and career accomplishments. So I date not to look for people to boost my self-worth but because I genuinely enjoy their company.

I am taking things as they come. Starting out of the gate, I do not require anything to be committed. I find that needs for commitment develop after I form a relationship with someone, and we date for a while. I’ve always been like this, even when monogamous. I don’t feel the need for commitment before I meet the partner in question. I don’t have a particular need for commitment. Not unless it makes sense — and I find these things make the best sense after the fact. After we meet. After we connect.

Of all the needs put forth in this question, there would be only one where I’m needy (one could even say greedy) as fuck: Communication.

It’s probably the one thing I’m non-negotiable on. I just can’t afford anymore to mess around with peeps who can’t communicate. Even then, there’s no set frequency that it needs to happen.

But partners need to be good communicators. And to be willing to communicate.

Not just when they’re comfortable or easy topics — but especially when things get complicated or uncomfortable.

But given all of this, I do try to keep an open mind and not come with too many specific and predfined expectations before a partner even enters the picture.

Part of this comes from knowing that no matter what rules I set for myself, I run the risk of breaking them. In fact, that’s how I ended up with Skyspook in the first place. When I fell in love with him, I broke my own rule against dating men who don’t have primaries.


This post is part of a series in which I answer each of the chapter-end questions in More than Two with an essay. For the entire list of questions & answers, please see this indexed list.


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