more than once i have been asked if i already have a boyfriend. once or twice i have been asked too if i was somebody's girlfriend. sometimes, my students talk about flings and how a fling is different from a boyfriend or girlfriend.
yet still, i am at a loss as to how to answer. usually, i ask back: define boyfriend/girlfriend.
and i get many interesting answers.
some say a boyfriend/girlfriend is somebody you hang out with and have sex with. others say it's somebody you have fallen in love with and who has fallen in love with you too.
but then i counter--
1. if you hang out with somebody and have sex with him/her but you don't really care much for each other and each other's lives out of bed, isn't that more appropriately called a sex friend? :)
2. if you have fallen in love with somebody and he/she has fallen in love with you back but you haven't talked about your relationship yet nor have made love yet, nor started building something together with, isn't that more appropriately called a beloved or a lover (although lover takes on sexual connotations) ? : )
3. and what do you call somebody you hang out with and make love with and who has professed falling in love with you and whom you have fallen in love with back, but who is not yet ready nor willing to be romantically and sexually exclusive with you, or you vice versa?
4. how about somebody you hang out with and have sex with and who has fallen in love with you but whom you haven't fallen in love with back? are you his girlfriend but he is your sex friend? : D
my definition is a tad more than that-- it's somebody i hang out with and make love with and whom i love and who loves me back and whom i have a mutual agreement to be romantically and sexually exclusive with and whom i make plans for the future with.
my students hoot at my answer. they say my definition is not that of a boyfriend, it's of a fiance or a husband! : D
and i still can't understand flings.
my students say it's more appropriately a one-night or a few-nights' stand, or a sex friend, whom you don't really care about but only lust for. but since i have never had sex with somebody i don't care about nor feel affection for, i guess i still have to experience one. : )
so when somebody asks if i have a boyfriend or if im somebody's girlfriend, my safest answer is a "no"; although if going by other people's definitions, i think i must have had a dozen boyfriends already!!! (and i am soo shocked at this realization-- to have had a boyfriend or been somebody's girlfriend without knowing about it!!!) omigod!!! : O
and here's one last question to boggle the mind-- how do i call somebody:
1. i hang out with regularly and share my day and thoughts and feelings with;
2. whom i have fallen in love with and has fallen in love with me;
3. make love with;
4. started to make a commitment to be romantically and sexually exclusive with; and
5. started to make plans for a future together with,
but whom i have never met for real in person as all of the above has been done virtually/online? :)
which brings me to another last, last question: what is real, what is not real -- the sharing of all parts of your selves except the body, or the sharing of the body and not the other parts of your selves?