‘It’s complicated.’

About a month ago I wrote a blog about how I wasn’t ready to date.

A simple claim that I had recently come to grips with at the time. I received a lot of feedback from people who shared their stories with me. It was a roughly a 70/30 split between people who have experienced similar situations versus people who were encouraging me to put myself out there.

Someone will come around when you least expect it. 

I semi-believe this but also believe that things sort of align with the place you are in your life. The right person might come along, but maybe you’re at a point where you’re setting for the wrong guys. Idk. It’s a process.

Dating in 2018. Have you tried it? It’s weird.

One moment I’m aggressively swiping through apps cramping my thumb from the abundance of leftward motions and the next moment I say fuck it and just hope Prince Charming will be sitting at my bar.

You’ve gotta kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince. 

If that’s the case, there’s an serious overpopulation problem. Like China except Toad Land. Kidding, sort of. I’m not bitter. I swear.

But yeah, it’s just so weird and complicated. Half of the time I blame myself and the other times I blame the toad pool. I don’t know who are the “right” people to date for me versus the totally wrong people. Or if there even is a right or wrong way of doing things. Ya feel me?

With each ending relationship, I learn something new about what I want and certainly what I don’t want — but will this just be an ongoing learning experience rather than actually finding the right right guy? On paper, I know who I want. Or, rather, who I should want. I’ve had a few instances with guys where I’ve mentally gone through the checklist and they are seemingly the perfect person for me.

Then I lose interest. Or they do. Whichever comes first.

And most of the time, I don’t know why. But I’m also at a point where I don’t really care. Like, I feel like I’ve sort of expected things to be doomed from the beginning which sounds so depressing, negative and pathetic but in my head it’s really not. It’s just simple statistics. And I don’t mind it.

I used to care a lot more about what men thought of me. I would meet a guy that I was remotely interested in and suddenly I’d start planning my future with him. You’re lying if you didn’t go through a similar phase. It was like every guy I made out had to be my boyfriend at some point or else I’d feel a pit of rejection in my stomach that wouldn’t go away until the next potential suitor came along.

Hey Beth, what are you doing tonight? GUYS OMFG HE TEXTED ME. PAUSE EVERYTHING YOU’RE DOING AND TELL ME WHAT TO REPLY. HOW LONG SHOULD I WAIT TO TEXT BACK? LIKE 8 MINUTES YOU THINK?

*48 seconds later*

Hey! Not much, just hanging with friends. And you? 

It was as if waiting 8 minutes would make me seem less psycho and eager. I don’t know. It was college. Times were different, I guess.

Now, tbh I don’t really give a shit. I’ve sort of gotten over letting guys judge my “crazy-ness level — whatever that means these days.  If I’m interested in someone, I talk to them. If they fail to put the effort in on their end, I lose interest pretty quickly. I don’t overthink a double text and I certainly don’t wait 27 minutes to text back if they took 21.

I take 18. 

In a sense, I’ve made dating less complicated, but I also don’t think about it as much. Well, like, guys are quite often ~on the brain~, but so are the thousand of over things going in my life — things that are usually more important.

I’m busy and I need coffee, always. My ideal relationship would be with someone who is equally as busy but makes time to bring me coffee and call me pretty. But I’m also OK with doing those things on my own.

So, um, I guess I’m actively dating again. But it wasn’t because one day I was like Ya know what, Beth?! Pull your Tinder bootstraps up and get back on the dating train!!!

Tinder bootstraps? What?

It more just sorta happened? I stopped putting pressure on myself to move on and decided to just rise above what happened and be better. He’s not the reason why I wasn’t ready to date. It was me. I guess I started being open to new possibilities.

I’ve chosen to spend my time with people who are simply worth my time. If it turns into something more, great. But if not, that’s cool too.

***

Recently, a guy asked what I was looking for. Relationship-wise, of course.

At first I was sorta taken aback. Like, wooaaaah how dare you ask a super valid question before we go on our first date? I showed my friend, how am I supposed to answer this?

Um, idk Beth, maybe you just be honest? There’s a thought! 

I told him I didn’t know. It sounded like a cop out answer, but I don’t really think I’m in a place where I want or should put a pretense on someone or something that may turn out to be just another toad in the toad pool. I’m not saying all toads are bad people, I’m justing saying that most toads won’t be the right toad for me.

How many times can I use this metaphor without exhausting it? The limit does not exist.

It would be a lie to tell him that I’m actively searching for a committed relationship but it would also be a lie to tell him I wasn’t. I just like, don’t know, ya know?

My last relationship made me second guess everything. I always felt like I was being too needy. Too emotional. Too psycho. Too everything. It was exhausting. I really hate that I keep talking about the same dude, but like, whatever man. Feeling all that shit sucked and I continue to learn more about how it impacted me. And I guess I can thank him for giving me some solid content to chat about with you guys.

Point is, I don’t want to second guess anything when it comes to relationships, platonic or romantic. Wishful thinking, I know. I just want things to, like, be. You know, just some dude who likes a gal enough to bring her coffee and call her pretty without being a shithead.

Sorry, that last part was aggressive. Just keepin’ it 💯!

Speaking of aggressive, I called a dude a jackass recently. Like, last night. We had been sorta on and off for quite some time and it wasn’t a complicated thing…until it was. Sure, I was a few vodka sodas deep and maybe I should’ve just let things go naturally. But also, it’s how I felt. Simply put.

I tried coming up with a nicer noun, but I guess that was the first thing that came to mind. Nobody’s perfect, and I’m sure there has been points in my life where I’ve acted like a jackass, but at this point in my life, I’m just kinda over the what is this? banter. Long story. Possibly might get into it at another time.

As humans, we naturally complicate things. We take a scenario and twist it into some convoluted mess that can’t really be explained to anybody not involved in the mess itself. Usually this doesn’t end so well, but we continue to do it anyways.

I’m about to sound soooo basic and soooo pathetically single and sorta aggressive. Ready for it? I simply just don’t have time for stupid shit. Mentally. Physically. Emotionally.

That’s not to say I won’t continue to deal with stupid shit, but hopefully it’s stupid shit that I can’t control. Ya feel me? I’m also not quite sure how I define “stupid shit” but I think we all know what constitutes as “stupid shit.”

 

Per usual, I don’t really know where this blog post was supposed to go. I guess it’s just refreshing to say that I’m at a point where I’m equally as comfortable dating as I am not. It’s refreshing to say that I can confidently call someone a jackass and not later label myself “crazy” for it. If it’s deserved, of course.

I used to think that if you were engulfed in the dating scene, it had to be a main focal point in your life. Like, you had to actively make it a part of your day to find the right toad.

I’ve been on 4-5 dates this past month with different guys. Sure, they took up the small amount of free time I had, but they were dates that I wanted to go on. Some were better than others, but there was no pressure to make it something more. No pretense that it had to be something more. Just two people who showed a genuine interest in each other and wanted to act on it.

The best part? All Most of them didn’t turn out to be a convoluted, complicated mess! It’s great!

I’m not naïve and I won’t say relationships aren’t ever complicated, because they are. That’s just howwww the cookie crumbles. But, I suppose there’s a spectrum of complications and I’m just out here tryna fall on the right side of it while also trying to to avoid the spectrum entirely.

I have really cool stuff going on in my life — stuff that I am so damn proud of. It’s crazy to think how much I was holding myself back when I was with someone who took up literally all of who I was. I knew there something more out there for me, but I was so consumed in this “relationship” that I never acted on it. I don’t want to be at that point in my life again.

I don’t know the type of person I need to be with. I don’t where he is either, but he’s out there somewhere.

I can wait. Hopefully he can to.

While you’re waiting, FYI I usually drink hot coffee with almond milk. It’s an easy order to remember. You’re welcome. 

To you, I’m just a “sort of”

He usually texts at around 2am. Sometimes I’ll receive a sober phone call in the afternoon to “say hi,” and other times it’s a 4am, “Hey, what’s up?” text. Never consistent, never expected, never sought after.

Continue reading To you, I’m just a “sort of”

I’ve already labeled you as a disappointment.

Since I have moved to a new city, my blog has taken a bit of a backseat; a fault that I can only place on myself.

I wondered why my hands were incapable of writing something up; inspiration isn’t hard to find as a writer. I tried to blame it on my lack of time, which is partially true, but it didn’t really seem to feel right. My brain wondered off to thinking “oh, there haven’t been any stories worth writing about recently.” But then I quickly shut that thought down because there have been plenty, trust me.

My recent posts have been lacking the emotion that I have been avoiding for reasons I was afraid to publish. I’ve been in a weird state of forgetting why I started this blog in the first place. It used to encompass fearlessness; personal stories published to provide a greater purpose, to provide meaning.

Somewhere along the way, I lost that, and trying to regain it has been rather difficult.

I have pushed feelings aside to focus on myself, to thrive in a new city alone, to be who I want to be without having to invest myself in someone else.

I have come to find the casual dating scene to be quite exhausting when I have limited time on my hands. A man who wants to meet for drinks downtown isn’t a very far walk, but on my only night off, I don’t really want to make the time.

They leave their numbers on my receipt at work, with a short and sweet note that reads something like, “You were great! Would love to go out sometime.” It makes me smile, but I stuff it away with the rest of my checks and continue on with my shift.

Swiping right and reading “It’s a match!” boosts my confidence for a moment, then it stagnates once again. The countless “hey what’s up?” messages all become meshed into one, and I couldn’t be bothered.

I enjoy talking to them at the bar as I’m enjoying my after-shift vodka soda cran, and we exchange good conversation for a brief ten-or-so minutes. I provide a false promise to grab drinks and text them. Although my interest has been heightened in the words we have exchanged, I can’t get myself to have it go any further than that ten minute window.

The truth is, I have already labeled you as a disappointment.

To some I may sound like a bitter single 20-something, maybe to some I’m lazy. Some say you have to go out and search for what you want, others say wait for the unexpected.

However, I’ve done both. They haven’t worked. My love life isn’t “boring” by any means but it has been a constant disappointment and I’ve teetered between the ideas of placing the blame on the men I’ve encountered and shitty timing. But when do the excuses run out?

I try not to blame it on myself because let’s face it, you never want to put the blame on yourself.

It’s like staring at a mirror and watching it crack before your eyes. Unequivocally painful and indisputably harsh. The failures in my love life aren’t unnatural, I’m sure you have shared in some of these sentiments with me. They say “you have to kiss a lot of frogs before finding your Prince Charming,” or whatever.

Well, what if I don’t want to kiss anymore frogs?

In a world full of people, how offset is this ratio and how come everyone else seems to be figuring it out besides me? The dating culture encourages kissing frogs with the hopes of them someday turning them into something less grotesque, usually after several months and drunk texts. I know the system, but perhaps I’m doing it all wrong.

Or, maybe I’m the frog.

I don’t know. It’s an odd reality to face: knowing that you’re good enough, but trying to find why you weren’t good enough for them. It’s somber, it’s disappointing, it’s inexplicably exhausting. It’s tough staying optimistic when you’re track record steers you in the other direction.

I have waited for the text after sleeping together, deciding on whether you’re just too busy. A day passes, and my brain has been wired to lose interest after day 2. I refuse to lower my standards just to see if your interested. If you don’t care enough, then I won’t.

I have been the girl to continually go back to her ex, although every time I knew I was the one who would be made a fool. Fool me once, fool me twice, fool me ten times, what the f*ck am I thinking?

I fell for a guy abroad, I promised myself we would always stay in touch. I held onto the idea that we would cross paths again and be happy in the same place. We exchanged letters, filled with romantic words scratched on paper that are tucked away in my nightstand. Every so often I carefully unfold the delicate college-ruled paper and read them, as a reminder of the love that never was. As a reminder of something that could have been, but wasn’t.

I allowed a guy to stay with me for the weekend. A guy I wasn’t all too sure about, but decided to take a chance anyways. I didn’t want to be his girlfriend, but the entire weekend I was thinking, “Can you at least pretend?” The weekend ended on a sour note and I, again, was not good enough.

I bounce back from disappointments quite quickly, simply because I’ve been wired to do so. When I say, “I’m over it,” I really am. But how many times can you truly force yourself to be over something before it catches up to you? As humans, are we really supposed to continually not give a sh*t?

Am I really supposed to not care?

I’ve waited, I’ve been the chaser rather than the one who is chased. I’ve set myself up, knowing I’d only be let down. I wanted to be the girl who changed you, even though I knew the entire time you never wanted to change for me. I’ve pretended to walk away, with the hopes that you’d follow me.

I’m not surprised when people leave, I’m more surprised when they stay.

Being single is fun and exciting. It ~liberates the mind and frees the soul~…right? There are days where I couldn’t imagine myself with someone seriously, but other days, I wonder why no one has given any effort to take me seriously.

I have liked guys, have thoroughly enjoyed first dates, some of whom wish to pursue me further. But, like I said, I have already categorized you as a disappointment. I have already told myself that I won’t be good enough for you, so I focus on being good enough for myself.

I don’t really want to put myself out there. I don’t have the time, I don’t have the desire I once did. You can tell me how much you enjoyed our conversation, but I’ll always be thinking “Well, this won’t last for long.” So, I force myself to end it before it goes anywhere.

“That’s your problem, you’re doing it to yourself.” Maybe I am, but at this point, what other option do I have? I’m not saying I hate being single, I’m not saying I hate the entire male race. I don’t really know what I’m saying.

I guess this post was written to attempt to explain the mind of a young woman who is continually asked, “How’s your love life?” A question I usually answer with something superficial and empty rather than being honest and replying with, “disappointing and exhausting.”

It’s taboo to admit defeat in the dating scene. With the rise of dating apps and seemingly endless options, it’s like we no longer have an excuse. Finding someone is supposed to be easy. You have a pool of men in your hands at all times, so what the hell is your problem? Why haven’t you found anyone yet?

I’m tired of being disappointed. I’m tired of trying proving myself to someone else when the world is constantly challenging me to believe that I’m good enough for myself.

I’m tired of believing in something when i know there’s the chance that there is nothing to believe in.