Today is the perfect example of why I avoid relationships. I hate being put in damned if I do, damned if I don’t situations. Or feeling like I’m in that position anyway. Right now I feel like I’m stuck in limbo… not even at a crossroads, but stuck in a freakin’ rotary (for those of you not from Boston, that’s a circle or a round about) just going ’round and ’round like the Griswald’s in one of those cheesy National Lampoon movies from the 80’s. Look kids, Big Ben! Ugh.
So why, you ask, do I feel damned? Because after a fantastic weekend I let one sentence, a phrase really, ruin everything. And I’m honestly being such a girl about it that it’s driving me fuckin’ insane! While I often curse these estrogen induced moments of temporary insanity, this time I feel like my psychosis is justified.
If you’ve been following along with the journey of Mr. Sports Fan and I, then you are well aware that 1) we are both commitment phobes, 2) he has a constant need to label things and 3) he drives me to insanity sometimes!
We enjoyed a fabulously fun weekend (see my last post). When you work as hard as we do, you have to play harder! Things were great and then last night (really 5:30 this morning) as we lay cuddled up in bed chatting, it started. Truth hour. We haven’t had truth hour in about 6 weeks so this was a big one! He half-jokingly said he doesn’t want to be treated like a boy toy or used for sex. I jokingly said he wasn’t a boy toy, he was a man toy. We chuckled and then he, again half-jokingly said “Seriously, I feel like my feelings and needs aren’t being met.” I gave him the “are you fuckin seriously acting like a chick right now” look and we both grinned. He said “What? I read that shit in Cosmo.” (insert laughing here). Still keeping with the light-hearted, half-joking/half-truth telling conversation, I responded with “Aww, OK, please tell me what you’re needs and feelings are so I can try to better serve you.” Well, I thought it was funny. I guess he didn’t because he rolled over away from me and said I wasn’t taking him seriously. Seriously?! OK… sigh. He said (in his sarcastic half-joking tone) “In any relationship it’s give and take and I just truly feel like I’m not being heard and I’m merely a sex toy for your pleasure.” Fuck! Now we were going to have that talk!
I lean over, Mr. Sports Fan still laying on his side with his back to me, and rest my chin on his bicep. “Do you really think that’s all you are to me? That’s really all this is?” “Well, what is it then,” he asked. “You don’t want to go there.” I responded and then he said it… “Well, let’s go there.” OK, you asked for it… “If you have to call it something, call it what it is… we’re dating.” He turned his head and looked at me. “We are? That’s news to me” “Well you wanted a label, there you have it. Call it what it is.” “We’re not dating. We’re just casually fucking.” Seriously you mother fucker?!!
I walked right into the trap, a land mine if you will, one I had been tip toeing around and trying not to trip for months now. I figured if we didn’t talk about the huge pink elephant in the room, then it didn’t exist. We were happy, we were having fun, things were great. Why did he have to push me to answer and then, when I do, respond with something he knows bothers me.
I silently rolled over, my back to him now, and he rolled over to wrap himself around me. He fell asleep within a matter of a couple minutes. Not me. I lay there thinking of how he just reeled me in and then dismissed me. It really upset me. And then I was upset because I let something so small upset me. It was a viscous cycle of thoughts and emotions. I know I fell asleep just as the sun was coming up, but I did not sleep well. I hate to admit it, but having him in bed next to me simply isn’t enough… I need to cuddle with him to sleep well. I hate that. He loves it. I’m so fucked!
He woke up this morning and kissed my forehead and neck to wake me up. HIM: “Everything OK, you stayed away from me all night while we slept.” ME “mm hmm” HIM (chuckling) “Did you have a dream that someone stole me or something?” “ME “Nope” HIM “OK what’s wrong? I know you’re upset. Just talk to me.” ME “I’m fine.” HIM “No you’re not. I can read you better than that. What’s wrong? We have to communicate.” ME “Nothing, you just said something that upset me.” HIM “We just woke up? What did I do? What did I say? When?” ME “Last night. You brought up the ‘what is this’ question. I answered. You countered with ‘we’re just casually fucking’. That’s it.” HIM “I said that? I don’t remember. I’m sorry.” ME “OK”. Case closed right? Wrong!
He kept the conversation going, trying to extract labels out of me again. I wasn’t really answering, eyes were still closed and I was hoping to dose back off for about 20 minutes. He wasn’t giving up. “You’re Boston Single Girl. You don’t do relationships, you don’t do commitment, you don’t do labels. What’s so wrong with me saying that?” He kind of had me there, but now the feelings escalated from mildly upset to pissed off! Mother fucker don’t push me unless you want the truth! “You DON’t want to hear what I have to say on this” I firmly answered, continuing “You don’t want the truth.” He attempted to make a funny by making reference to A Few Good Men and Jack Nicholson (“You can’t handle the truth!… I love that movie). He pressed on…
“It bothers me because while neither one of us are comfortable with relationships, commitment or labels, I expect you to at least have the balls to admit what it is when you demand answers from me! Do you realize you’ve been at my house every day and night for the past couple weeks straight?! You have slept here every night! You have clothes here, half your wardrobe! If we were ‘casually fucking’ as you put it, none of this would be going on. We wouldn’t be having sex multiple times a day or even daily. You wouldn’t be here when my kids are here! You’re shit wouldn’t be here and we’d BOTH be seeing and fucking other people. There is NOTHING casual about what is going on. Face it!” He just looked at me and said ” Well it sounds like you’re upset that I’m here so much and that you want your space to do what you do and be with other people.” OMFG seriously?! That’s what he got from that? This argument went on for a while and then he said “Fine! If I chose the wrong word, fine. What do you want me to call it.?” “We don’t need labels. “Oh, but I think we do now.” “Just call it what it is” “And what’s that?” “We’re dating.”
The words spilled out of my mouth, but there they were. And oddly, I wasn’t afraid of it. But I didn’t have time to analyze my own words. I had to pay attention to the issue at hand, what was right in front of me.
Now he started acting like a negative asshole. Apparently placing that label on us meant that we now had to be miserable, there was no choice in the matter. We would no longer sleep naked, entwined in each other’s bodies like puzzle pieces, but we’d have to start sleeping fully clothed. In separate beds maybe. And sex would cease to exist. So would fun and laughing and having a good time. “We have to be miserable now, just like every other couple out there.” At some point I stopped feeding into his ridiculousness. He was making me feel stupid for being honest with him and that just felt horrible.
I rolled over and turned my back to him as he continued to rant. “So are you going to talk to me about this?” “Please just stop talking about it,” I asked. “Well if you’re not gonna talk to me I guess I’ll just go,” and he got out of the bed. By this point, I don’t know why (OK maybe I do), but I was crying. He walked around to my side of the bed, saw my face and said “OK maybe I won’t go,” climbed back in to bed and held me, apologizing. After a couple of minutes he said “OK probably a stupid question, but I’m a guy and you know I’m not good with this shit. Why are you crying?” “Because you know I suck at honestly,verbally communicating and you just made me feel stupid for being honest with you.”
“Hey..” he said, softly this time, “you know I would never intentionally hurt you, right? I hope you know that.” I do know that.
“I still don’t understand, I mean, neither one of us is good at this shit and neither one of us does relationships or labels. I thought we were happy. I just don’t understand.”
I thought for a second and said, “OK, Let me try to put it in terms you will get. Remember the other night when X was flirting with me right in front of you? It really upset you, even though it was innocent and X has no idea anything is going on with you and I. Well, you know how that made you feel?” “Yea” “OK well that’s how you, making that comment, made me feel.”
“OK, I get it. I’m sorry. I don’t know how to do this. I suck at this shit, you know that.” I know that, too.
We kissed, I accepted his apology, we cuddled and had amazing make-up sex. Isn’t this what dating couples do? I’m just saying…
I know this is kind of new territory for me, but was I completely insane for feeling the way I did about his comment? Was I just being a girl?
When we got out of bed to begin our day, he said “Can we please not put anymore labels on us? Please?” “Yes, agreed” We kissed and went downstairs to begin the day.
I don’t know why, but this still seem unsettled. Maybe I’m over analyzing it. I have a tendency to do that, to get stuck inside my head. He just called me and said he just needed to hear my voice, know I was OK and apologize again because he feels really bad for making me cry. “We’ll talk about it during truth hour later,” he said before he hung up. I don’t know if I can handle another truth hour so soon.
Why? Well because I feel like I’m damned if I do and damned if I don’t! If I communicate with him and tell him the truth, he gets weird about it. If I keep things to myself and don’t open up, he gets weird about it and pushes. I’m afraid if he keeps pushing, he’s going to get me to admit to something I really, really am not ready to admit to and he really, really, really isn’t ready to hear.
Can I just keep driving around the rotary for a little while longer?
Seriously? I can’t tell which one of you hates labels after that round and round discussion??? He wanted to know what you two are, so he asked for a label… then you gave him one… then he ended the argument by saying “let’s not put labels on things”??? OMFG. Not good lady. Not good. Get over the labels, and just enjoy every moment. BOTH. OF. YOU. Sounds to me like you’re both spending more time worrying about what labels you might fit under (or not), than you are about enjoying the present! Take a breath, both of you, and just LET EACH OTHER BE WHO YOU ARE. There. I said it.
I have a post publishing in a couple of weeks called “When is a Date a Date”. In it I list some ridiculous examples of women avoiding the term date. I’ll be damned if I didn’t stumble across this post, with a dude acting even worse!
Boston SingleGirl, you are DATING. You guys can pick some custom label if you want, but you are seeing each other romantically, fucking, and most of all, he is around your kids! You are dating! Period.
The elephant in the room isn’t the “D” word. It is the “E” word. Exclusive. If you want to avoid the E word for a while that is understandable. But the D word ship has sailed…
I recommend re-reading Jimmy’s comment. That guy is smart.
Smooth, thanks for the comment. I always appreciate another perspective. We tend to be rule breakers rather than rule makers and we are trying to create our own rules as we go. Since I threw the D word out there, he’s very accepting of it and is tossing it around in the open. We’ve already been the E word for a while now. We just don’t label shit.
Jimmy here! I just wanted to say kudos for calling him out and mentioning the dreaded D word, however I just want to say unless he can admit to himself that you are in fact dating, then this guy will disappear.
If you can’t label this a relationship, then it isn’t one. Sure it may seem good now, but eventually you will get to the point where being in limbo is not conducive to your well-being anymore and you will snap and it won’t be pretty.
If this is casual, then it has to be casual. He can’t be sleeping over all the time ESPECIALLY when your kids are there. He seems to want the comfort of a relationship but doesn’t want to take any of the responsibilities of being in one.
You need to do what’s best for you. You care about him and if he’s the one, he will man the fuck up. But if you let him keep coming over, he’s not going to mature. He needs to miss you and you need to know if this is a relationship out of genuine feelings or just plain comfortness. (Take it from someone who used to be this guy)
You deserve better! Trust the butterflies in your stomach. If it doesn’t feel right…then back off and if he is the one you’re supposed to be with, he will prove himself.
Hi Jimmy, thanks for the comment. I love getting a guy’s perspective on shit like this! He has no problem saying the D word now that we’ve talked. I think what he really wanted was for me to be the one to put it out there. He and I have both been seriously burned MULTIPLE times and we are both FUBAR when it comes to this shit. Seriously! Neither one of us wants to truly show our cards. We are literally the male and female version of each other. Kind of scary!
When we aren’t together, he constantly calls/texts/emails. He tells me he misses me. He says he doesn’t like the days when we go all day without contact, it makes him sad. We have spent nights away from each other, but when we do we spend all night on the phone like we’re 16.
Hey Girl! Wow … how intense! I know how you feel, after all that we’ve been through it’s understandable to shy away from any sort of label & commitment. But, at the same time, if this is a person that you are comfortable enough around to spend days with then perhaps you do need to reassess what it is. Sometimes defining a relationship is a good thing, no? But do it when YOU are ready and make sure you’re on the same page. Great post!
Thanks hun. We’ve both been seriously burned and that’s why neither one of us wants to label it. Since that chat we had, he’s been using the label. It’s also tough because we work together (he’s kind of my boss, lol) BUT we were… whatever we were… prior to working together. It’s complicated on so many levels.
Thanks Marie. Mr. Sports Fan and I have a ton of fun together and we really click. We always joke that we are the male and female versions of each other, which is good and bad depending on how you look at it. I’ll check out that book, thanks XOXO
I’m with you girl! I avoid relationships at all costs! I think I will forever be single, but that’s because I want to be. I enjoy the fun of dating without all of that “extra” emotional stress. I was with someone for 5 years and it was wonderful. He popped the question and I freaked, I think that’s when I realized, that type of commitment terrified me. I just finished reading a book you might like, called “The Club Rules” by a guy named Johnny Mac. It’s a great book that is a great reminder that dating should be FUN! Definitely worth checking out and if you’re interested, his site is http://theclubrules.com/. Good luck with Mr. Sports Fan and always stay true to yourself! Thanks for the post!