“I just don’t understand why you’re single,” a guy said that to me recently. But after years of hearing it from others, I got really pissed off. It’s because I keep failing. Failed marriage. Failed relationships. I feel like I’ve been thrown multiple life lessons and I’m failing every one. Why else would the lessons be never-ending? When I look around, I don’t see everyone else going through years of endless dating torture.
I want to know when these stupid little life lessons are going to end and I’m going to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Where’s the damn prize? I feel like I’m getting nowhere, like a salmon swimming upstream; I don’t even know what the lessons are, or what the point of the lessons are. And yet at the same time, I look back on my decisions and think, “God must be tired of me spinning my wheels all the time like a Gafatch.”
I can’t accept that all happily married women got everything right or had learned all these ridiculous life lessons before they got married. Chose the right guy? Stayed true to themselves? Didn’t neglect their friends? Worked their career religiously? It’s a crock. I think most women – and men as well – are in denial about a lot of things pertaining to dating and their significant other.
Let’s talk about the things I’ve been in denial about when it came to the guys that have been in my life. Putting aside the fact that I’m a result of my dysfunctional family and they’ve had to deal with me, in whole or in part they:
– still had feelings for or went back to their ex
– cheated on me
– were on drugs
– couldn’t handle my dysfunctional family
– where in the middle of a divorce
– were not intelligent
– were alcoholics
– were low income
I’d like to say that there were no quality guys where I lived when I was younger, but I’ll be honest with you: I was completely terrified of quality guys. I had several that asked me out in my life and I emotionally and somewhat physically ran from them. I actually married my ex-husband thinking, “Well, he’s kind of a slob, but that’s okay because no other girl will want him.”
That’s excruciatingly pathetic.
Once again we can thank my horrifically dysfunctional mother and father for putting into my head that I wasn’t worthy or capable of dating a quality person.
For the last few weeks I convinced myself that I wasn’t groveling for bits of affection. I quite pitifully accepted being on a back burner. I was allowing myself to be on the bottom of his list. Despite the fact that I get anxiety when I think of having to fit someone into my life – I was still accepting crumbs.
Typically from the above scenario I would picture an unkept girl with wrinkly clothes and no makeup who sits at home, testing her phone to see if it rings. Not the case. I had the week off, but was very busy most of the week. But I realized I was missing an ex and wanted to hear from him – and that angered me. It also made me realize he wasn’t reciprocating.
Denial is such a sick, twisted thing. We think that we’re fully aware and capable and in control, and suddenly realize we’ve been groveling and pathetic.
Denial isn’t good. It’s a shitty river and I can’t swim.
I’m finally, finally starting to respect and honor myself and allow myself to be angry when I realize that there’s no need for me to accept emotional crumbs from someone who’s just not good for me. My friend Joe would say, “You DID win. You escaped a shitty relationship.” After decades of feeling alone in my family and now in relationships, that’s hardly a reward.