Posted in Dating, fun, funny, Life, love, Musings, People, relationships

A Long Time Alone

alone
Seriously, this is so true.

 

I was talking with a friend of mine last night about how hard it is, at the point in my life that I’m at, to meet someone I’d actually like to date. I mean, it just seems like so much work…basically, my best option seems like it is probably online dating sites, which I’ve tried before and it is so incredibly overwhelming that I generally peace out within a matter of days. I’m not good at having more than one conversation at a time, I don’t like it when strangers get overly familiar with me, and it’s very easy to be hyper critical when you have so many choices…and, there is the fact that I have a notoriously bad picker. I will like the wrong guy, Every. Single. Time. I used to joke that if you lined up five equally good looking men, all dressed identically, I would naturally gravitate to the one that is on parole. I don’t know why that is, but I promise you, it’s true.

But you know, a big part of why I have stayed single for so long is that, after going through SO MUCH drama in my last relationship, I finally developed some self preservation in the area of the heart. Emotionally, I’ve just been very, very wary. My judgement failed me so hard this last time, so many times in a row with the same dude…I have to admit, it’s not only alarming, but somewhat embarrassing, too. You know, I had this dream about where we were going, the life we were building, and of course looking back I can see that it was never going to happen, but I believed it for a long time. I think letting go of that dream was far harder than letting go of him. I remember, after I had found out he had been cheating on me since two weeks after our daughter was born- I think she was six months old when I finally confirmed what I already knew in my heart- I remember pulling over in the parking lot of a Round Table Pizza, and just crying in my car. I had no idea what my future was supposed to look like anymore. I thought we were a family, I thought we were heading somewhere, and suddenly everything was gone. It was awful. I just couldn’t get my head around it.

And so, I made the first of many mistakes. I left him for a while, but he kept coming back, and I let him, for a myriad of reasons. I loved him, sure, but I know now I could’ve gotten over that with distance. But also, I had a teenage daughter and a tiny baby, and I needed help. Then there was the fact that I just didn’t want to be alone, and even more emphatically, I didn’t want him to be out there, having fun, while I sat at home miserable. No, he could be there with me, miserable together. It got pretty dysfunctional. I turned into someone I did not like. And I stayed that way for a long, long time. It took even longer, after we finally split, for me to stop being so angry and bitter. I can see now that I had a part in all that happened after the first transgression- I could have walked away and I chose not to. I chose to let the heartache fester and turn into something much uglier.

So I finally broke free. And you know what I did, instead of worrying about men? I went out and I fucking got my shit together. I kicked ass at life. I got clean (again) and I worked on myself, and I worked on myself some more, and I got my finances in order, I became a great mom, I got a routine, I paid my bills, I figured out that I can hold it down…all by myself. And, as I talked to my friend last night, that’s when it hit me- I think, for most of my life, I stayed in relationships because I kind of had to. I truly was in a position, most of the time, where I only kept my head above water by the contributions of my significant other. When that is the case, it makes a lot more sense to keep trying to work it out. Certainly better than living in your car, most likely.

That’s not the case anymore. I can let go of all that past shit, because, not only do I not NEED someone, I am not the same person anymore. I think I might even be able to trust myself to choose more wisely, now. So, maybe I will, maybe I won’t. If there were some way to jump from the awkward beginning right to the comfortable middle, where you can just leave your makeup off and hang out on the couch all weekend watching TV together, I would definitely choose that. Like, skip over the hard parts- first kiss, first naked encounter, first nerve wracking disagreement, right into the comfort zone. Wouldn’t that be great?

In the meantime, if you know of anyone great, around 40, good sense of humor, kinda nerdy, kind, and SUPER patient…not hideous is a plus, but I’m flexible- send him my way. I really don’t want to do online dating.

 

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Author:

I'm a single mom in recovery, trying to navigate life with grace-and failing spectacularly, sometimes. Learning to be a grown up In my 40's, without losing my lust for life, or my faith in humanity. Come, watch the antics. It should be fun (for you, at least).

11 thoughts on “A Long Time Alone

  1. Ghegheghe ‘I used to joke that if you lined up five equally good looking men, all dressed identically, I would naturally gravitate to the one that is on parole.’ Obviously it is not funny to you but very recognisable to me. After years of not being interested in men I first fell in love with a guy with a marihuana addiction who turned schizo right after we did not meet anymore. The second had a gambling and marihuana addiction and then I found myself the hug-buddy. Because of bad memories coming back now when sober I thought we should take it slow. Works out he has a sex- and alcohol addiction…. Well, who am I to point a finger… It’s just… just…. well, he’s not on parole. I think. 🙂 They say: until we deal with our own ‘vibe’ of addiction this things will happen. Not sure. But I was thinking: is it not in a way demeaning to myself to ‘look down’ on the other addicted person? Obviously it is good to set boundaries and addicted people who do not take sobriety/being clean seriously are not my cup of tea. But else? I assume it are ex-addicts from now on. 🙂 And maybe that is good. Normies are never going to understand me I think / fear.
    xx, Feeling

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Courtney! I’m glad you’re in a spot now where you’re open to opening up to someone. I hope you get some good referrals and find someone kind, and generous, and fun without having to wade through the insanity of online dating when you’re a woman! My experience of OKC was very positive since I found someone who fits me perfectly when I had basically given up all hope, but I know from talking with my gf that women’s experiences with online dating are vastly different than men’s. If the referrals don’t work out, and you do decide to give online dating another try, I thought I’d offer some suggestions!

    First, answer lots of the OKC questions. Not only are they kinda fun, but they do provide a pretty good algorithm for matching you up with someone with lots of shared attitudes and interests. The notion of “opposites attract” is over-rated, and I think especially later in life having support and shared interests is much more attractive.

    Next, ignore your inbox. There are a lot of disgusting men out there who just spam every attractive woman they run across, operating under the theory of casting a wide enough net somebody may reply back. I know a lot of women enjoy being pursued, but that doesn’t really translate over to online dating. Whereas a man approaching you and asking you out in real life shows an attractive confidence, the anonymity of online communication lets a lot of otherwise wishy-washy, immature boy-men pretend they’re something they’re not. Just don’t even go there. Instead, explore men’s profiles yourself, at your own pace, using the matching algorithms. Look at how they answered the questions you answered. Read their profiles. If they didn’t bother answering many questions or filling out their profiles, move along. You’re a writer. You probably value good communication skills, so look for someone who’s filled out their profile in a clever, witty way that reveals something about themselves and connects with you. That may take a while, but I feel pretty confident there are guys out there like that; you’ve probably got to hunt them down.

    Finally, ignore your inbox. I think this bears repeating. It sounds like the avalanche of stupid or disgusting messages is what wears women down about online dating, so seriously—just poke around and explore on your own, and don’t go down the inbox rabbit hole. You’ve got your shit together, you’ve forged a nice life for yourself, take your time and find someone to share that life with on your own terms.

    Happy hunting, you deserve the best! 🙂

    Like

    1. Ben, I am SO HAPPY to hear from you! I’m so glad you found someone, you have no idea. 🙂 I thank you so much for the sound advice, and I wish with all of my heart that you would start blogging again…I don’t even care what you blog about, I just miss reading your writing so much! Thank you for this- I promise, if I do take the plunge and check out OKC, I will let you know how it goes. You made my day!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks, Court– yeah, I miss the blogging, it was a lot a fun, therapeutic, and I met some cool fellow writers like yourself. I know I’ll be back one day. Turns out that adding being a boyfriend to my already insane schedule (fulltime job, part-time jobs, being a dad) doesn’t leave much extra time. My kids are close to being grown though — Annie is 17, and Aaron is 15, and once they’re on their own I can dial back the work and reclaim some me time 🙂

        I’m so glad you’ve got so much sunshine in your life these days, I read everything you post and it brings a smile to my face. I wish you nothing but the best!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I just read your list, and thought “me, me, me again – and me”. Unfortunately I’m on the other side of the world, married, adopted kids coming out of my ears, cats that I work for, fish that I feed (god knows why), and an old house that I battle with continually. You never know though – in some sort of parallel universe, maybe we ran away together ? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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