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The Latest Stories By Brian Finch

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  • When a game is not a game

Brian Finch

Brian Finch

Brian Finch, founder and publisher of Positive Lite. I've had a blog since 2005 when I decided one day that I just wanted to write. Since then I've grown to writing for a local Toronto magazine, Fab, and contribute to

I first went public in the 1980s, and with the exception of a few years of taking a break, have not really stopped. Life is an evolution, and for the last six years I've brought everyone along for the ride, the good, the bad & the ugly.

Today I share stories of my lastest recarnation of life of a publisher, traveler, recovery, a new relationship, my three-pound Chihuahua Hildy, converting to Judaism and where ever else my journey takes me.


When a game is not a game

Thursday, 14 November 2013 Written by // Brian Finch - Founder Categories // Dating, Gay Men, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Brian Finch

Another one bites the dust. Brian Finch on why relationships are elusive for him

When a game is not a game

Relationships are elusive for me. They have, all but one, been a real source of pain.  I never heeded the red flags that would ultimately come back to haunt me at the end. My choices were not just bad but extremely damaging. One of them almost killed me.

In my last post I wrote about meeting someone, going for coffee, then the next day being in his place, laying in bed talking. Since he had followed my blog for years, he knew a lot about me. I decided to share something that started off with a very difficult time that turned into something very positive and he cut me off before I could finish with, “I don’t do crazy.

He ultimately explained that this was referencing something else. However when I’m interrupted with the word crazy, there is an association. This was the word afforded me by a tweaking HIV negative meth-head obsessed about barebacking as a bottom and then blaming someone else for becoming positive. He even contacted public health and made a big mess.

I can’t seem to find balance. One guy complains about not having enough time with me after just one week. This guy is dispassionate, letting a week go by only to text “hey” early Saturday night. There is no romance, no flirting, nothing that I’d expect from someone who is interested in me.

The next time I see him, I go to kiss him hello – and he avoids it. He tells me the reason when I ask later. Why not say that right away? Then he tells me that he plans on moving to Vancouver. I’ve learned it’s not good to get in between the person and his relocation dreams.

Most meetings I was initiating. I had invited him to a show I had produced and in which I was performing, this time a 20-minute gig for me, the longest amount of stage time yet.

The last time we spoke was the night before the big performance.

I’m taken back by the question, “Why don’t you have a boyfriend, I mean you are a nice and attractive guy.” Now I feel like there is something wrong with me. I didn’t know the default position is to be in a relationship rather than working on having a happy independent life.”

Now that three weeks have passed I ask him about what is going on here.

I realize that I’ve now let him be in the driver’s seat with me following along.

The answer was basically this: “Let’s just throw spaghetti against the wall and see if it sticks without any romance or wooing etc.  If it turns into something then it’s great.

Before going to bed, I check Facebook one more time. The show is tomorrow and there might be some messages. This is when I see on his wall, “I like someone; I don’t know what to do.”

For a second I think this is some sweet message that was about me. I read on and see it is about a guy at the gym that he is too shy to say hi to.

I’m tired and stressed about tomorrow and shut the computer off. I’m not angry, just disappointed. He’s free to do whatever he wants. However, I can’t go into this big day with him by my side for dinner. Do I mention it? Do I have the right to? What would the answer be? Do I really want to have this conversation right before I’m supposed to perform?

I decide to send a text (his favourite form of communication and it was too late to call). I cancel getting together for dinner pre-show.  I tell him nicely that this no longer feels right for me after reading his Facebook post.

It’s an impossible situation. Had the show not been going on I wouldn’t have felt the need to pull the plug so quickly like that. For me the show and the performance was the most important thing. I could not allow any other distraction.

The following morning he texts back that it was a game, and I basically should have known. And if I didn’t I should have asked and not assumed.

Fair enough, but I didn’t know that and I had to perform with my headspace firmly grounded.

My rational: it’s not up to me to tell you who to like or me to control what you post. It’s only up to me to figure out how I feel and what is best for me

I suspect he probably labeled me with “crazy” as I had feared in the fist place.

The result simply leads me to the question “is it possible to date anyone when it’s been so long? Am I the one who fucked this up? Was it doomed anyway and I used this as my escape hatch?”

Maybe so. It doesn’t feel great. And worst of all it had completely distracted me from  the fact that I gave an amazing 20-minute performance, my best and longest yet.