There is a very real possibility that perhaps I’m just behind the times and haven’t “gotten with the program”…but if this is where the future
is has already headed, I’d much prefer living in the past. I consider myself to be pretty liberal in a number of aspects and I try to keep an open mind to most things, but there remains a part of me that’s also very traditional. It’s pretty simple–don’t force me to take on your views and we’ll probably get along.
If that article is how the world is these days, we are in for some sad times. My sham of a [7-year] facebook marriage has more substance and meaning than that.
I saw this article directly after reading the one linked above, and it filled me with all kinds of doom and gloom. It also reminded me of two years ago, which I remember with frightening clarity because I was so disturbed by it.
One fine morning, I awoke to find that I had missed a 3 a.m. phone call from an acquaintance who apparently considered me to be her best/closest friend (this was mystifying to me because I’d met her only 4 months ago and to be quite honest, we didn’t really talk much and had only interacted a handful of times, if even that). In any case, I called back to see if she was okay.
I feel rather guilty for the thoughts that ran through my head as we were talking. While I did in actuality care about her well-being, I could only be sympathetic to a certain point. She’s a nice person, but her being basically goes against everything I believe in. I actually only met her because I was friends with her boyfriend, but I admit to having wondered on [many] occasion[s] (during the couple conversations we’ve had) how it was that they were together.
Obviously, this could easily be the cynic in me speaking, but I happen to believe that I am in fact being a realist. My definition of cheating is basically anything you wouldn’t do with someone if your significant other were there with you. If I were going out with someone…
(1) I would not retell the entirety of my previous love life in front of him to a girl I’d met not so long ago. Hell, if I can help it, I barely tell even my closest friends about the shit that went down (so to speak, but those were some terrible times).
(2) I wouldn’t ever share a hotel room with a sleazy ex who still tried to hit on me despite knowing that I was his friend’s girlfriend, since it’s seriously just asking for trouble and drama and all the things I hate to start piling. (This one’s purely hypothetical since the first ex and I are definitely not on speaking terms, and the thought of even being in the same room as him puts me at a state of unease and compels my sympathetic nervous system to kick into overdrive. Sorry. No offense. But seriously, as low as CM went, even he didn’t try shit like that. Hence my further repulsion and desire to remove myself far from this situation because I am unfortunately acquainted with said sleazy ex. How’s this for unsavory characters in my life that I’d dearly love to escape?)
(3) If I knew someone else liked me even though I was going out with someone already, I wouldn’t let him drive me all the way to LA, then drive back to the bay area and then fly back once again to drive me back from LA to the bay area. (I’m not sure how that would even work, and that sure as hell goes against everything existent in my conscience.)
(4) Nor would I consent to stay if it were a co-dependent and damaging relationship.
But maybe that’s me. If he cared to know about my previous relationships, I’d give him the watered-down version, not every sordid detail. If he insulted me and meant it (because even I find my regular abuse fairly amusing–but of course, only if they don’t actually mean it), I would kick him to the curb. But I digress. What actually happened is that they broke up, and she was distraught. This I can slightly relate to only because of my second relationship, although if I recall correctly, I was in somewhat of a numb shell of denial. I didn’t pin my every hope and dream of having a meaningful existence on the guy, or bemoan all the problems in my life and dwell on it forever, because I knew it would accomplish absolutely nothing. They were supposed to get married later that year though, so that, I truly could not empathize with.
She wanted me to bring us to the jewelry shop so she could show me the engagement ring that he’d almost finished paying off (so she could see it one last time). I felt like this was a terrible idea on a multitude of levels, and managed to avoid aiding this pending catastrophic disaster because she showed up at my doorstep with her now-ex (aka my friend). I also thought that her seeing this ring would be akin to pouring salt on wounds, or twisting the knife in a little deeper, and I found what she told me to be mildly disturbing (e.g. this was “the ring she’s been dreaming of for months and she can’t stop thinking about it”).
I know there are girls out there who fantasize about their dream wedding and the perfect dress and the people they’d invite, the place where they want it to be at, where they’ll go for their honeymoon…(I could probably go on, but honestly, that vein of thinking is kinda frightening to me.) This is not me. Eight(?) years ago, one of my practice SAT essays was about refuting something I’d always been told (“Someday, you’re going to grow up and get married” was the statement I chose to refute). Apparently, I painted a vivid enough picture that the teacher was positively glowing when she gushed about how amazing my essay was. She kept me anonymous, but I was the only one to ever get full points on any of the essays she graded. Go me. Mayhaps it pays to be bitter. Except I’m really more of a cynical sap. It is a terrible combination.
Case in point, however, I feel that the actual person you’re marrying should be what you’re most concerned with–-in my case, since I’m straight–does he make me happy, does he treat me well, does he brighten up my life, + support, encourage and love me, is he someone I can depend on who I would feel excited/lucky/blessed to spend life with and would I be more than willing to do the same for him/do I make him feel the same way? Because if that isn’t the case on either end, why would you bother? Why would the wedding or its guests even matter?
Mayhaps I’m alone in this line of thinking. I feel like I’m being overly critical, considering the fact that, if my dude were okay with it, I’d rather we just elope to save ourselves from the horrors known as debt, stress, and crazy people. Then again, my definition of “elope” is also rather loosely defined, since I did promise 6F that if I were ever to tie the knot, I would indeed tell them to save some sort of date so we could hang out and celebrate together.
I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt–that she was fixating on that ring because it symbolized her relationship with him and she still wished it were salvageable. But it sounded nothing like that to me. What she told me made it sound as though she cared more about the ring than the actual person she was with. If, for whatever reason, I lost the person I wanted to spend my life with, I would be sad for all the new memories we’d never make. I’d be sad for all the things we always said we’d do but never had a chance to do, for all the things I’d never get to tell him, for all the things I came across each day that I wanted to share with him, and above all, for the loss of his place in my life as the person I wanted to be with and spend life with.
Food for thought. If those articles are any indication of what relationships nowadays are like, I am going to be perfectly fine living with 6F, my 79 cats, 2 dogs and 1 horse.