Dating Diary Part Nine
The other day a woman I’ve been dating said she loved me; which is a brave thing to say after only five dates! (Maybe she was joking?) When a woman first declares her love for me the first thing I always think is: why? So I said to her: why do you love me?
Was it my charm? No.
Was it my wit? No.
Was it because I am such an amazing lover? No. (Why did she laugh when I said that?)
Ok, I said, why do you love me?
Because you bring me tea in bed in the morning.
Let me get this right, I said. You love me for my tea?
Yes, she said.
No woman has ever loved me for my tea before.
The last man in her life was younger than me. He was very successful and very rich and he provided her with a very lavish lifestyle. Amazing holidays skiing and two beautiful homes. But no cup of tea in bed in the morning.
Of course it wasn’t about a cup of tea. It was the thought that counted; the thought that the woman he loved might like a cup of tea to start her day. He never once said to her those magical words: darling, would you like a cup of tea?
We tend to think that to impress someone we’re dating you have to do something really big and — usually — expensive. But it’s often the small things that can win them over like a nice cup of tea. A smile. A kind word. A cuddle in bed.
Men tend to think that being good in bed is all about sex. No. Being good in bed is also about what you do after sex. It’s about being close and intimate with someone. There’s only one thing that can improve great sex and that’s great cuddling after sex. But that’s not as easy as it sounds.
My tea loving lover told me, “It’s hard to find a man who knows how to give good cuddle” and explained that a good lover makes you feel more alive, but a good cuddle, makes you feel more loved.
I suspect that most men would prefer a reputation as a great lover rather than a great cuddler. I mean, have you ever heard a man boast, “I gave that woman the cuddle of her life last night!”
To be good at cuddling you have to love to cuddle. You have a physical need to cuddle. A great cuddle is when the physical separation between the two bodies suddenly melts and you seep into each other and you’re just one warm body. A great cuddle should leave you with the feeling that you never want to get out of bed. Ever.
In films and novels, it’s usually the man who leaps out of bed A.S.A.P or stays and endures a cuddle wondering: how much longer before I can leave? (see When Harry Met Sally). But I had a girlfriend who, after sex, would always turn away from me and watch football on the television, while I read Sylvia Plath and sulked. We didn’t last very long. No cuddles, no future.
Another thing I’ve discovered is that people over fifty are always better to cuddle than younger people. We have the time and leisure to lay back and get lost in a lover’s arms. Young people are always checking their phones or leaping out of bed, because they’re late for a morning meeting or a coffee catch-up with a friend.
Little do they know that it’s one of life’s most lovely and luxurious feelings to be laying in bed having a cuddle and a cup of tea – especially when everyone you know is charging off to work!
Cosmo Landesman is the former dating columnist for The Sunday Times and writes about love and romance for a wide range of publications including The Times and The Spectator magazine. He is currently single — but remains optimistic that true love is just one date away.