14 posts tagged dating
Since giving my ex anymore air time after this much time probably does not send the right message to my lovely readers and since my dating life is non-existent due to a grueling schedule of grad school, book projects, and a just-enough-to-get-by day job, I have decided that I will now turn my attention to those of you who are sweet enough (and for some,desperately miserable enough) to write to me for advice.
I have added an advice column and I will be answering all of your fascinating, heartbreaking, funny, crazy, deep questions here:
I get a lot of people asking me for advice. To these people I say: Are you kidding me? Did you read my blog? I hopped my ex’s fence, so I am the last person you probably want to ask for advice. However, since the demand has been so high and I’d like to think I’ve matured a bit since my fence-hopping days, I will give it a go. This is in response to the many questions you lovely readers send me. Hope it helps!
Don’t waste your time on people who don’t treat you well. That seems obvious right? Well I’m pretty sure that I am surrounded by masochists because I get a lot of mail along the lines of “He cheated. How do I get him back?” and “I love him, but he broke up with me and now he’s dating my cousin,” etc. Breaking up hurts, but being with someone who treats you like shit hurts way more in the long run, so nurse your breakup hangover with a pint of ice cream or a few vodka sodas (for my over 21 fans) and be reassured that he or she will probably die miserable and alone someday.
Listen, listen, listen. Yeah, I know. Of course we heard him when he said he didn’t want a girlfriend, but like, we don’t want to be in a relationship either. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made this mistake. I see a cute guy I like and I go deaf. I ignore all the signs that this is not a good fit and go barreling blindly ahead. If this is too vague for you, I’ve compiled a list of signs that this person will not be a good girlfriend/boyfriend from various friends’ and my many experiences with “not listening:”
- Tells you he (or she) is moving back to his country in a month and just wants to have a good time
- Is wearing a wedding ring, but is currently in the middle of a divorce
- Does not bathe, or have a job, or do anything productive really
- Has a carseat in the backseat but makes no mention of having a child
- Still lives with his ex, but only because “finding an apartment in this city is hard”
- Is “polyamorous” (look that one up kiddies… it’s not cheating if it’s an open relationship)
Which brings me to my next point…
Be honest with yourself about what you want. Don’t change to fit his or her wants and needs. This was huge with my friends and I in high school. One of my girlfriends would suddenly take a keen interest in the rules and game strategies of lacrosse and before I could say, What the fuck? I’d see her start drooling over some senior walking down the hall in his varsity lacrosse jersey.
When you’re older, it’s even worse. You meet a man who is just perfect. Then you realize he wants to have five kids and live on the West Coast by the time he’s 35 and you just got used to the idea of owning a plant and being on an actual lease. So be realistic and stay true to yourself. You may feel like you’re losing out on something in that moment, but really you’re just opening yourself up to meeting someone who actually wants and likes the same things as you.
Focus on YOU. According to me, every person I ever dated has an amazing relationship with someone else now. I am the only single person on this planet and I know a loneliness that no one except the most pathetic ogre could possibly understand. It’s easy to become jealous after a breakup. People move on and your ex will date other people. But so will you even if he gets there first. And just try to be satisfied with the fact that deep down he will never find anyone better than you and you’re way hotter than his new girlfriend anyways. It works for me. Just kidding (sort of.)
Am I over him? A few weeks ago, a coworker of mine was telling me about the guy who broke her heart and nodding, I said, “Yeah mine was named—” Total blankness. I literally could not recall the name of the boy who made me crazy nearly every day for more than two years. Of course, I forget what I’m watching on tv while the commercials are on and his name came to me a few seconds later, but I realized something.
The past few months had been so busy, I barely had time to think, let alone obsess. I only got over him when I stopped worrying so much about whether I would ever get over him. Of course after my conversation at work that night, I went home and Googled the shit out of him so… Yes and no?
As for all the other specific questions you guys asked, I will try to answer some of them in this list of Do’s and Dont’s.
- Don’t get back together with him if he was a shithead the first time. This will likely not change.
- Don’t date your best friend’s ex without her permission no matter how much you love him because that’s asshole behavior and no one likes an asshole.
- Do blog. I love hearing other people tell me about their blogs. Writing is super cathartic!
- Don’t worry about friends who choose him over you. They clearly weren’t good friends in the first place.
- Don’t worry if you act a bit crazy in the midst of a breakup. We all have our moments. Just don’t get yourself arrested… it sucks.
- Don’t wait for him if he begins dating someone new, but you know they aren’t meant to be. Life is not a Nicholas Sparks novel.
- Do let yourself fall in love again. Even with all the shit parts, I still think it’s worth it.
There you go. That’s all I’ve got.
So I promised a certain stranger-turned-friend a post all about him and it’s about three weeks late, but here it is:
Sometimes when you’re pretty much sure that you suck, that all guys suck, and that humanity in general sucks, the universe gets it and rewards you with a little reminder that maybe there are like a handful of non-sucky people. That was a very articulate sentence, I know.
Anyways, judging from my last post, you can imagine my level of frustration with all the lame guys I have been meeting in the past few months. Honestly,I had pretty much resigned myself to the fact that pretention has no single homebase, but, in fact, dwells on both coasts and I would most certainly end up living the life of a lonely spinster or, even worse, a weird cat lady.
And then on a stiflingly hot Saturday afternoon, after blowing off my boss’ request for me to come in to work and “help out,” a friend and I wandered into a dark-wood paneled bar nestled amidst a busy stretch of restaurants in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn. Halfway through our individual pitchers of mimosas, a scruffy-looking guy with a baseball cap and cargo shorts plopped down next to me and pulled out a laptop. Within minutes we had struck up a conversation, quickly hopping from our love of Venice (where he was visiting from on business) to my travels abroad in India.
Somehow we stumbled upon the topic of this blog and he insisted he be allowed to read it. I furtively shook my head no, but by the time I had drained my carafe of champagne and his nagging had worn me down, I gave in and reached over to pull it up on his computer.
Embarrassed, I hid my face as he read the first post. I heard him chuckle and I looked up. He begged me to pick another one for him to read. We read different posts and he laughed and I cringed and finally laughed too. We talked about politics and people, the cities we’d lived in, our passions, and a little of our pasts. All in all, we clicked. At the end, I waited for him to ask for my number.
He didn’t, but what he had to offer was way better. He told me how he had fallen in love with this girl back home and how it had changed him. He was pretty sure she was the one. He also told me that I was an amazing woman (his words, not mine, I swear) and how I shouldn’t be worried about “finding” someone.
I didn’t go home and sleep with this guy. I didn’t get a kiss or a number. What I got, though, was a renewed sense that it is possible to connect with someone even if it’s just for an hour, that you never know who is going to sit next to you in the bar at two in the afternoon, and that there really are good guys out there. So Rafael’s girlfriend, you are one lucky lady. And I’m feeling pretty lucky again too.
When we were growing up, we just instinctively pictured two of us. Life was tackled in pairs and Prince Charming was a given. But one day you’re 26, slightly tipsy and being blown off by the umpteenth boy you hooked up with “too soon” and decided to text for a conciliatory hookup at 4 am.
From the time I started seeing video clips of the streets of New York in elementary school, it was something I strove for. I wanted to be one of those busy people; people with a purpose who could still reach out and touch ten people in less than a blink. In a two-door coupe, driving through the busy streets of Los Angeles, shielded from human contact by the steel framework of my Honda, I longed for the stray “hello” you were bound to receive if you were forced to actually walk down the street. I began to think that love was something I was bound to find in New York. The odds were simply in my favor.
Then I moved here. And I went out with Rob. And Andrew. And Sam. And Peter. Each one had a better degree, a better job, than the last. They were handsome and exotic, from places like Finland, with athletic chests and crystal blue eyes. And they made me feel like shit. They say that for every successful guy in New York, there are three desperate girls. Apparently they have picked up on this. Whoever said being single in the city is great fun was a masochist.
There are a million reasons why being in a relationship in NY is better and I have no problem naming you a few. Living as a couple is cheaper. It’s more convenient, and when the day is done, you always have someone to come home to to bitch to about your boss who still expects you to get her Starbucks despite your Masters degree.
I want that. And I don’t have that. What I have is my ex from Ohio calling me and telling me that he is here for me. And that makes me want to cry some more. So I guess I’ll just cry and hope that tomorrow all the tears at least make my face look a bit fresher in the process. And with the sun coming up and my buzz wearing off, that’s as much hope as I can muster for today.
Almost all of my close female friends, and I literally can say all except one, are in long-term, serious, committed relationships. Furthermore, they all happen to have been in those relationships for almost exactly six years. How I happen to be the only single one amongst my friends is a mystery to me. Not so much the part about being single, but rather the part about them being my friend.
Honestly, at this point, I think they keep me around to remind them how shitty the dating world is when they get tired of their boyfriends. I am simultaneously envious and disgusted by their pure cohabitating bliss.
Lately though, they have me worried. I look to them as proof that relationships do work and that it is possible to find your perfect match, but in the past month I have been on hand for two relationship crises. Two out of four friends, mind you, and of the remaining two, one has been having an ongoing crisis surrounding the issue of marriage for so long now, I don’t really consider it an actual crisis anymore and the other is already engaged and they are too freakishly happy to be human.
The first happened about a month ago. Being the lame, broke writer-type that I am, I was knocked out by 10 PM on a Friday night until I was awakened by my phone buzzing for what seemed like forever. I turned over the phone on my bedside table and squinted at the glowing screen. Lindsay? Why was she calling me at 3 AM? I chalked it up to drunken pocket dialing and silenced the call. Closing my eyes, it began buzzing agin. Sighing, I answered. Hello? I mumbled groggily.
Lindsay burst into tears on the other line. Can I come over? she sobbed. Of course, I said, instantly feeling bad for ignoring the call. What’s wrong, though?
Adam and I broke up.
What? I exclaimed. Of course, come right over. I hung up the phone and less than a half an hour later, she arrived on my doorstep, her side-swept bangs plastered to her puffy face. I enveloped her in a hug and guided her to the couch. What happened?
After another few minutes of sobbing, she managed to admit that she and Adam had been having problems. She had come home from a fun night out, only to have him coldly tell her that he had “given it a lot of thought and didn’t want to work on the relationship anymore.” My jaw dropped. Was it that easy to end a relationship spanning more than half a decade?
Who does that? she yelped. This is your specialty! she implored. Advise me. I looked at her helplessly. I have never been in a relationship that needed two hands to count the length of it and the thought of something ending after that long made me sick to my stomach for her.
She continued, I mean who ends a six-year relationship at one in the morning on a Friday night? Doesn’t he know how hard it is to find parking? The indignant look on her face sent me into a spasm of laughter and when she realized how ridiculous her comment was, she too collapsed into giggles.
After we’d caught our breath, she looked at me seriously. Really though, I’m going to have to delete my Facebook account. I looked at her quizzically.
I mean there is no way I am changing my status to single. Oh my God, do you think he already changed his status?
I am not going to lie, I completely lost it right then and there. I am happy to report that by the next day they had gotten back together, but honestly seeing my friend in so much pain even for a night made me seriously question the ability for even the most solid relationships to last.
Two weeks later, round two occurred. This time my friend Melissa called me crying. I rushed over and it was the same sad story. After six years, they had ended it like that with a quick phone call. This time we drowned her sorrows with a bottle of wine from Trader Joe’s and some McDonald’s. They are still apart.
There was a time where I was convinced that if you could make it past a couple years, you could make it forever- well maybe like a decade, at least- but now I don’t know. In today’s world, is it even possible to make a relationship work long-term?
It has been 647 days or 1 year, 9 months, and 9 days since I took to the internet to share my every OCD, homicidal, self-piteous feeling after my breakup with my ex. I know this because I just used a website to calculate this, which evoked a mix of emotions, not the least of which was shame that I still scan Facebook on a nearly weekly basis for traces of him.
But something has changed because when I come across proof that he does still exist— a smiling picture here and there of him and his girlfriend, his new business’ website, and even Youtube videos— two emotions sweep over me and neither of them is longing. Honestly, I can only explain my continued digital hunt as a bad habit, a tic of sorts, something to occupy my time while avoiding looking for a grown-up job that will utilize my degree.
You see, I don’t fucking miss him anymore. I really don’t. I’ll admit I am at once jealous of his new life without me and of his happiness, but more than that I am RELIEVED. Because I have changed— all those terrible qualities he used to accuse me of, I have,for the most part, grown out of— and when I see his arrogant grin smiling out from pictures, I know he hasn’t.
It may have taken me nearly two years to get here, but I have finally reached a point where I can say I DON’T want him back. I mean, if it wouldn’t be so insanely weird I’d probably climb to the top of the Hollywood Hills and proclaim this fact to the world because it has taken for-fucking-ever, but in an effort to appear sane, I’ll just share it here.
In these past two years, reading feedback and even hearing it in person from friends, I have come to the realization that most people, if not all, will experience at least one relationship that will send them barreling toward the edge of Crazyville and if they are lucky, the best they can hope for is for it to be a short trip.
But for many of us who experience that long journey of clawing our way back to join the rest of humanity, there is that lingering nutcase that remains hiding inside of us. The psycho-child who you hide from future boyfriends or girlfriends and even close friends that secretly continues to look him or her up online or holds onto pictures of the two of you and insists that you still miss him or her. The psycho-child that quietly insists that if he came running back to you, you’d drop everything and be with him.
Well, I’m here to tell you, ignore the psycho-child. Unless of course you want to be miserable, in which case, I guess go for it? Because two years out, it’s pretty unlikely that you really truly miss him or her. I sure as hell know I don’t. I miss a thought, a feeling. That intensity you get when you fall in love as hard as you must to end up as heartbroken as you do in the end.
But him? Hell no, I don’t miss him at all.
A friend patted me on the back yesterday and congratulated me for “growing up.” This comment was preceded by my confession that I’d never really broken up with anyone before. I hate direct confrontation so much so that I’d always just alternated between ignoring and driving my boyfriends crazy with obnoxious behavior until they were forced to dump me.
But I knew I couldn’t do that this time. As a big, grown-up 25-year-old, I had to be direct, suck it up, and do what had been done to me only a year earlier. Today was the day.
I spent much of my day at work expressing my terror to my co-workers about my impending breakup. I wondered if this was how my ex felt when he dumped me. I knew it wasn’t. I’m convinced that emotional, sudden breakups— though they hurt longer in the long run— are much easier to execute in the moment because they are sudden.
The ones you know are coming but you don’t want to actually make happen are extra nerve-wracking because you have time to think and re-think and plan and re-plan what you’re going to say over and over.
In the end, I said the truth, cliche as it may have been— it’s not you it’s me. We sat there awkwardly for a while and though he admitted he was kind of stoned and was not sure he was taking it all in yet, I could still see how bummed he was. And I still felt terrible.
So here I am, an hour later, feeling somewhat like a traitor writing about doing exactly what drives most people to seek refuge on this blog in the first place, but let it be known that no matter what side you’re on, no matter how wrong it all was anyways, breaking up just sucks. Period.
One of the things they tell you when you go through a horrible breakup and the snot and tears have finally dried (for the most part) yet you’re still in a rut is to go out and date someone new.
It’s the age-old advice. When you fall off your bike, you gotta dust off your scraped knees and get back on. Jump back into the saddle, if you will. Now I, a serial dater who literally has full conversations with my four-year-old schnauzer when I am forced to be without company, can totally get behind this type of advice- usually.
But I’ve quickly discovered over the course of my six month “rebound,” that sometimes what starts off as a distraction only ends up serving as a reminder of all the things you miss from your last relationship.
This guy, as clueless as he may be, never stood a chance with me. When he bought me thigh high socks for Christmas, I lamented to any friend that would listen that my ex bought me a piano our first Christmas together. When he was “nice” in bed, I inwardly lusted after the “naughty” sex life I’d enjoyed with my ex. And when I gently pushed him into being a little bit rougher in the sack, I’d lay in bed afterward visualizing the gentle way my ex had made love to me as our relationship became more and more intimate.
As time went by, I began to resent my new boyfriend more and more till I could hardly contain my glee as I walked around relishing all his faults and planning the day and exact manner in which I was going to dump him. But the weirdest thing was, as time went on and I grew more annoyed by his presence, he became more and more enamored with mine.
Then it happened. The thing I’d always jumped ahead to say long before it was true, he sent in a text message on the evening of my birthday. The “L” word. And that’s when I knew. I had to break up with him.
Because even after a breakup when it seems that the only plausible thing in the world is the pain that you’re feeling and everything and everyone else seems to be whirling around you in one big blur, it’s hard to remember that all those little people in that whilrlwind have their own hearts which are just waiting to be broken.
And one person’s rebound may be another person’s love. And so the chain continues…
Bros before hoes. Chicks before dicks. We all know the sacred unspoken rule of putting friends before relationships and usually I agree with it. I’d never dream of pursuing an ex’s close friends. But what if the relationship has crashed and burned and will never be able to be revived? And does the rule encompass any common casual acquaintances or just close friends? All in all, Is there ever a situation in which it’s okay to hook up with one of your ex’s friends?
As I’ve mentioned before, my ex and I share a number of friends, and though my blinding love for him never led me to throw even the slightest glance in any of their directions in the past, I have to admit there’s one I’ve always thought was pretty attractive and I knew he felt the same. Since the breakup we’ve shared some mild flirtation, but when I finally decided to turn it up a notch, I was met with an uncomfortable wall of silence. When I asked my girlfriend, who knows us both, she admitted that when she mentioned me to him, he said that no matter how hot he thought I was, he could never do that to his friend.
A week later, the topic came up again when a bunch of us were out. I was complaining about my inability to find a proper booty call and suggested that I might just be desperate enough to take my friend up on his repeated offers to “take me to a land of pleasure like I’ve never known.” The friend, who has always been pretty open about his crush on me, said as nice as that sounded, he could never do that to my ex. My jaw dropped. I countered that they were hardly close at all and that he probably didn’t even possess my ex’s phone number, but he just shrugged his shoulders and insisted it was the rules. For the rest of the night, I teasingly hung on him and took every chance I could find to nuzzle against his neck. Of course, I had no real interest in him, but the thought of being told I can’t do something is like daring me to try ten times harder to get it done.
Today, I asked my friend about my dilemma. She admitted that it was, indeed, the rule and asked if I would like it if my ex hooked up with her. And this is where I disagree with the so-called “golden rule.”
It’s one thing to be the dumpee and not want your ex to hook up with your friends, but if your ex clearly doesn’t want to be with you, should the rule really keep you from pursuing others who know him?
So after realizing I just simply do not have the time to devote to meeting men in bars and online, I’ve decided to cancel my subscription to Match.com. But as I say a final goodbye to the online dating world, I have a few questions to ask.
I’m assuming this is limited to LA, but why is it that every accountant, dentist, or teacher has a headshot amongst his profile pictures? Is having studio pictures a pre-requisite in this city or are even the professionals just failed actors?
Second, maybe online dating and being adventurous just go hand in hand, but it seems like a suspiciously ample amount of bachelors on Match.com have either climbed Mt. Everest, regularly skydive on the weekends, or go swimming with sharks in their free time. Guys, this is not 1995 and we are all well aware of the magic Photoshop can perform when it comes to cutting and pasting yourself in front of the Egyptian pyramids.
Finally, a note to Mr. 50+ Bachelor: lying about how old you are just makes you look pathetic even if you admit to your real age in your introduction. Furthermore, using the excuse that you’re trying to weed out the “older women who have teenage kids at home because you want to start a family of your own” does not help endear you to us young and fertile ladies because one day we too will be lonely divorcees who want to get some just as badly as our twenty-something counterparts.
So goodbye Match.com. It’s been a blast- or at least an interesting experience. I’ll miss all the actor-lawyer-adventure seekers you have to offer, but for now I prefer to meet my men in dank East-side music venues.