Category Archives: Rants

I love being single

I love waking up whenever I want and not having anyone say it’s time to get up. If I want to sleep until noon, I’m going to go ahead and do it without feeling guilty.

I love being able to stay out all night without having to answer any questions. Hell, maybe I don’t even sleep and just go right into the next day. No reason not to.

I love having the freedom to take chances, knowing that the only person at risk is me. I can move across the country to take a job…or just quit my job because I’m tired of it…or join a risky startup with the potential to make a lot of money. If I fail, I fail alone without taking anyone else with me.

I love going out and talking to every girl I see. I don’t have to choose, I can just move from one girl to the next without feeling any guilt whatsoever. And I love that I can ask all of them out if I so choose.

I love being able to make out or sleep with a different girl every night. Or maybe two different girls a night. We’ll see how it goes.

I love using up every square foot of my place with my own stuff, not needing to leave little corners for someone else who may or may not sleep over periodically.

I love not knowing what I’m going to be doing each weekend. And if I do know, I love not knowing who’s going to be there.

I love not having obligatory trips and appearances.

I love knowing that I could just be days, hours, or minutes away from meeting the next most important person in my life.

I love thinking that there’s a girl out there who’s never heard of me and doesn’t even know I exist, but someday we’ll become inseparable and won’t be able to remember what life was like without each other.

I love being single.

One Minute Girlfriend

Cupid and “timing” have conspired to make a mockery of my love life. This was not the first time these two have made trouble for me. In fact, it has happened so many times that I wonder if fate just likes toying with me.

I recently found out that she was leaving within a month for a job abroad. Long distance was one thing but international long distance was another, especially trying to create a relationship. When I looked at the odds and obstacles, it was much safer to keep silent and hold my feelings at bay. However, there was an incredible chemistry between us. From the first time we met, she brought out a side of me that only my closest friends have been privileged to see. This connection made connecting of our continents seem promising.

When I saw her next, my desire to live a life without regret released my restrained feelings. Words gushed out of my mouth, which left me naked with all of my intentions for her to see. She was shocked but happily surprised. Reality about our situation quickly weighted down my lofty dream. The only thing that steadied my nerves was the fact that her feelings for me mirrored mine. In her mind, she saw me as that person she would wonder about for the rest of her life. However, she didn’t realize that I was no longer going to settle for “what if”. It was too early for her to make a decision, so she went home to let everything sink in.

The following day, we met. A decision had not yet come to her. She felt pressured to give me an answer. I assured her that I only wanted to hear her decision when it came naturally, even it if meant waiting another day, week, or month. We parted early that day to let the dilemma marinate some more. Then, right before I went to bed, it dawned on me what I needed to do.

When we met the next day for coffee, I was nervous but determined to follow through on my new decision. So I told her that since I truly cared about her, the most loving thing I could do was to let her go. Her face expressed confusion. I explained that it was selfish of me to hold her back from being able to land with two feet firmly planted on her new home soil. It was not fair of me to hold her back from fully investing in her career just to entertain a fantasy of mine. As she listened, I could sense a conceded sigh of relief from her.

However, there was one request I had before I could completely let her go. I asked, “Will you be my girlfriend for one minute?” She stumbled back into her chair. When the shock settled, I extended my hand out and she took it. I looked deeply into her eyes. Time slowed down and every little second became a memory. As the second hand came full circle, I gave her fingers a final squeeze and let her go. I said my goodbye and walked away with a bittersweet grin, knowing that even though it was for only one minute, I had finally outwitted Cupid and “timing”.

Booty Call, Fuck Buddy, or Friend with Benefits?

Recently, I heard “If I’m Not Your Lover” by Al B. Sure!. Listening to it now, the lyrics resonate more then back when I first heard it in the late 80s:

If I’m not your lover
If I’m not your friend
Tell me, baby
Just tell me what I am

The song reflects the role confusion of what many dating singles go through. Since there are many more types of relationships than before, figuring out where one stands is more challenging. Recognizing the terms of a relationship can help keep expectations realistic and in turn keeps you in control. Below are my definitions of some relationship patterns. By no means are these descriptions definitive.

One-Night Stand

Calling Pattern:
Calls and texts are confined to a 24-hour time limit. After sex, cell phone connectivity seems to peter out.

Social Behavior:
Situational factors such as weddings, recent breakups, traveling, and out of town visitors have a profound influence on initiating a one-night stand. The relationship is brief and intense. Attention is focus on the moment.

Sentiment:
As the name designates this is a one-time thing. Therefore, having sex again after the 24-hour period would change the relationship into a different type. Common feelings associated with a one-night stand are “Wanting to get it out of my system”, “I was so trashed”, “Why not”, “It was just on”, and “Everything just fell into place”.

Booty Call

Calling Pattern:
Text messaging is the preferred mode of communication because of its conciseness. Calls or texts are often initiated around a bar’s last call. Chitchatting is avoided and instead there is a quick exchange of necessary details like:
– Can you meet up later?
– When?
– Whose place?

Social Behavior:
Time spent predominantly engaging in or preparing for sex. There is no dating or hanging out. Rarely do you see booty calls spending time in public together. After sex, spending the night is not obligatory and often discouraged.

Sentiment:
You’re on the same sexual page. There is an understanding that each person is in the relationship for just sex. Booty calls are not interested in a romantic relationship with each other. Therefore, dating other people is acceptable and each other’s dating life is usually kept private. To keep the relationship on a sex-only level, getting to know one another on an emotional level is avoided. Depending on the terms of the relationship, if one partner has sex with someone else, then terms of the relationship may need to be renegotiated.

Fuck Buddy

Calling Pattern:
Calls or texts are initiated to see what is happening that night or around town. Calls are usually focused around the social scene and whether paths will cross during the night.

Social Behavior:
Fuck buddies are able to be with each other in public. They often bump into each other at the same parties, bars, and clubs. Fuck buddies will seldom make plans with each other. Meetings are usually more spur of the moment or if there is nothing better happening. Fuck buddies can meet at the venue where the other fuck buddy is at and then go home with each other, whereas, booty calls will usually just meet where they will have sex.

Sentiment:
Fuck buddies are social play friends. The relationship is built on fun, casualness, and sex. They may be actively dating other people and are not interested in dating the other fuck buddy. Fuck buddies will usually only hang out if sex will ensue afterwards. Depending on the relationship, sex could be exclusively with each other or open to other people. This type of relationship ends if one of the members starts to seriously romantically date another person. However, if that partner returns to single status, the fuck buddy relationship can be reestablished.

Friend with Benefits

Calling Pattern:
Will call to just talk or make plans to hang out.

Social Behavior:
For the most part, these two people are friends. The big difference between their other friendships is sex. Friends with benefits have the ability to go out on date-like activities, which is useful for formal parties and weddings. However, real dates are not initiated because there is no romantic interest between the partners. The intention of hanging out is because they enjoy similar activities and each other’s company. Sex is an optional part of the relationship. If one partner has sex outside of the relationship, it does not end their friendship. Instead, the sex element is taken out of the relationship and they continue to be friends. Sex can also come back into the friendship when both parties are ready for it.

Sentiment:
This relationship is primarily about friendship. Friends with benefits care about the other; however, they are not interested in romantically dating each other. They are able to have sex with each other without it being awkward because they either have a good foundation for their relationship and/or communicate really well with each other. Since friendship is more valued than sex, sex is often sacrificed for the sake of the friendship. Friends with benefits are also able to talk about each other’s dating lives.

Girlfriend/Boyfriend

Calling Pattern:
Calls and texts include all of the above calling patterns. In this relationship type, calling frequency also facilitates maintenance of the relationship. Content of conversations spans a much larger topic area.

Social Behavior:
Both parties are comfortable openly expressing their affection towards one another. Each person publicly acknowledges this type of relationship to others. Dating and sex are mutually exclusive.

Sentiment:
There is a high level of exclusivity that does not exist in the other relationships. Both people agreement that they are a “couple”. There is a mutual understanding that this title involves social prioritizing and commitment. The couple will agree with the unique rules that determine their relationship.

Conclusion

These are only a few basic relationship types. Many of these types have different names associated with them. However, the name or the description is not of highest priority. The important point of defining your role in a relationship is to be able to get your needs and wants met. By communicating with your partner, one is able to better function within the relationship. Games, manipulation, unrealistic expectations, and jealousy can be somewhat avoided if each person is clear with what they’re looking for. Then more energy can be spent in getting the most out of the relationship.

Dear Matchmaker: I’m Single NOT Desperate

I appreciate when people want to set me up with their single friends. However, some people get overly invested in their role as matchmaker. Just because I am single and their friend is single does not mean that it’s a match made in heaven. When I tell them that I am not interested in their friend, they get offended and a slew of arguments soon follow:

  • “How do you already know?”
  • “You haven’t even given her a chance?”
  • “You may like her later when you get to know her.”
  • “Chemistry doesn’t happen right away, you know.”
  • “How come you’re not attracted to her? She’s beautiful.”

When they become incessant, it becomes a disservice to their friend because it pushes me further away. It is as if these matchmakers are more of an expert on me than ME I’ve been dating for most of my life, so I know what I like, don’t like, am attracted to, feel chemistry with, and if there’s potential. Anyway, I’m still figuring out how to tactfully let these matchmakers understand that I appreciate their intentions but that I am not interested.

The role of an ex

I have to admit, I’m horrible at breakups. It doesn’t matter if I’m the dumper or the dumpee, I find breakups to be very hard to deal with. Either I’m breaking her heart or she’s breaking mine; both options suck. There’s the guilt of being the one to end it and the endless questions associated with watching someone else walk away. Perhaps the hardest thing is to figure out where the ex belongs in your life.

I’ve always been of the mind that it’s up to the person who got dumped to decide if there’s a role for the other person in their life. After all, the other person made the decision to leave, it seems only fair to give the dumpee the power to make a decision as well. In some cases, it would be nice to be friends while in others you need the person out of your life as quickly as possible. Maybe you’ll be acquaintances. Maybe friends with benefits. Maybe good friends. Or maybe, there is no role for you whatsoever. It’s this that I’ve struggled with.

When I’m in a relationship with someone, it means that I’m not only attracted to her, but I like her as a person. My girlfriend has to be my friend in addition to my lover. So breaking up with a girl also necessarily means losing a good friend. At times, I’ve tried to keep the friend part while leaving the lover part…that tends not to work so well. Other times I give up both completely as the ex walks out of my life forever.

Perhaps the hardest thing to deal with is the resurfacing of an ex when you least expect it. You’ve just gotten over him or her and next thing you know, they appear in front of your face. There’s an awkward silence as you try to decide what to do. Do you pretend like you don’t see her? Do you just smile and wave as you walk by? Or do you stop and have a conversation?

It could also be that someone mentions your ex to you: “Oh, I ran into so-and-so. He/she looks good and seems to be doing well.” Hearsay ex stories are hard to stomach, especially if the ex is with someone else. You’d like to think that their world fell apart and they’d never love again after you, but we all know it’s not true. We’d also like to think that they didn’t go on to be successful because how would that be possible with out us?

I’ve always thought of ex’s as guest stars on the sitcom that is my life. Sitcom guest stars typically come in and date one of the main characters for a few episodes and then, when they break up, just disappear. They don’t go anywhere, those guest star ex’s, they just cease to exist. Their story stops right then and there; they don’t go on to do anything else. It must be nice as the main character, knowing that your ex just drops off the face of the earth and will never date anyone else or that you’ll never have an awkward run-in around town. That character’s role is done and so there is nothing else.

In reality, of course, we are each main characters in our own sitcom. I was a guest star in her life just as she was a guest star in mine. Really, we’re just spinoffs of that story we made when we were together, each going our own way with some of the same characters and situations. And so the question remains: how do your ex’s fit into your life?

I’m tired of being single

I’m tired of waking up by myself. I roll over and there’s plenty of room in my bed; there’s no one waiting for me in the kitchen.

I’m tired of eating breakfast alone. I turn on the TV so there’s some noise while I make my food. It’s not conversation, but it’s better than silence.

I’m tired of having things happen during the day and having no one to tell when I get home. The baby at work who randomly started screaming. The way my co-workers started a volleyball game across cube walls. All stories that could be told. If only there were someone to tell them to.

I’m tired of being a third wheel. Or a fifth wheel. Or a seventh wheel. I act like it doesn’t bother me when we’re all hanging out, but really, it becomes just another reminder that I’m alone.

I’m tired of people telling me that they don’t understand why I’m single. Other people, they say, it’s easy to figure out why they’re alone. They’re mean or angry or have no drive. I’m smart, I’m attractive, I’m successful…I should have girls lining up to date. Or so they say. They can’t pick anything out that’s wrong with me so I shouldn’t really be single.

I’m tired of people saying that they’re sure I’ll meet someone who’s wonderful and smart and more beautiful than all of the girls I’ve dated before. And then, they promise, I’ll be so happy that nothing else will matter.

I’m tired of going to weddings alone and having the bride or groom ask why I didn’t bring a date. And then remarking that there won’t be many single girls there. And then seating me at the rejects table because I don’t “belong” with anyone else.

I’m tired of seeing a musical, a play, or some other event that would be a lot of fun to take a date on. And then just not going.

I’m tired of my friends telling me that the last girl I asked out…the one who turned me down…isn’t good enough for me and she’ll regret it someday.

I’m tired of hearing that another one of my ex’s is getting married. Or engaged. Or is in a serious long-term relationship that seems to be “heading somewhere.”

I’m tired of my parents remarking that by my age they already had two kids. And then remarking that they’d like to have grandchildren before they turn 70.

I’m tired of coming home after work to an empty apartment. I don’t get to discuss the day or ask anyone how their day was.

I’m tired of eating dinner alone, on the floor, in front of the TV. My kitchen table gets no use. There’s no need for setting it when it’s just me eating there.

I’m tired of cooking for one. Which usually means I make too much and either throw the rest out or try to freeze it. But then I have no one to remind me that I have leftovers, so it just goes bad anyways.

I’m tired of unwinding by myself. My couch isn’t nearly as comfortable without someone to cuddle with.

I’m tired of going to bed alone. The bed is always exactly as I left it. My side untucked, the other side tucked. It’s clear that only one person has slept there. And only one person will sleep there again tonight.

I’m tired of being single.

Are You There God? It’s Me, Potted Plant

Did you have a good day? Mine was okay. I know I only write when I need a favor, but I am hoping you can grant me one wish (slightly different from a favor, in my opinion). Could you fix eHarmony’s algorithm so it stops matching me with Apu, David Hassellhoff and Yanni?

Thanks so much!

P.S. Also, if you could let the men know that putting up pics of themselves in spandex is not a good idea, that would be great.

Rule #1: Cheating means it’s over

When you’re learning to drive, you typically learn about all of the strange rules of the road. Things like who has the right of way when coming to a four-way intersection make most people scratch their heads. We just accept the rules as they are stated even though some seem illogical. These rules weren’t made to confuse you, they were made to help judges determine who is at fault for an accident quickly. When a driving rule is clear, there is barely a need for a court case. The rule takes the decision-making process away from people because it’s so clear.

Over the years, I’ve developed several rules regarding dating. The rules are there not to be petty or argumentative. Instead, the rules are there to remind me about what I deserve. It’s easy to forget what you deserve and how you deserve to be treated when in the heat of the moment. My rules are all very simple and very black-and-white. The most important rule: cheating means it’s over.

I always said that if a girl cheated on me, I would walk away and never look back. Then, one day, it happened. She said, “I’ve been seeing someone else.” My response? “Get out.” I know I deserve someone who won’t cheat on me because I would never cheat. I don’t want to hear stories about how it didn’t mean anything, or how she felt torn with feelings for both of us. At that point, it doesn’t matter. If I want you and only you, then I expect you want me and only me. Once that bubble has been burst, there’s nothing left.

What makes a good relationship is balance. When two people have equal standing in the relationship, the relationship is healthy. The relationship can quickly turn unhealthy when an imbalance exists. When one person in a relationship cheats, the balance of power has shifted. The cheating partner may want to come back, and the one who didn’t may accept that, but the relationship will never be the same. The partner who didn’t cheat now has all the power as the other works to “make it up to them.” The cheating partner puts more effort into the relationship and the non-cheating partner has to do less. If at some point in the future the cheating partner becomes upset with the other, it’s difficult to bring up the issue as it’s quite likely that the infidelity will be brought into the conversation. “At least I didn’t cheat.”

Thus my rule: cheating means it’s over. There is no excuse for cheating, no way to heal the hurt that it causes. I don’t want an unbalanced relationship. I don’t want a girlfriend that I can’t trust. For me, as soon as I find out she’s cheating, there is nothing left to say. By making the choice to cheat, you have told me in no uncertain terms that I don’t mean enough to you. I accept that. Now get out.

Cat Woman

So, at one time, Cat Woman was a cool, sexy villainess who was always outsmarting Batman. Maybe she was a bad pussy cat from time to time, but you have to agree that she was hot and someone you would want to know more about.

But, sometime between then and now, having anything to do with a cat has become the curse of death for a woman’s dating life. Yes, my friends, Ms. Window Shopper has a cat.

Yeah, yeah, I hear what you are saying, “Well, now I understand why you are single. You have a cat!”

That’s what doesn’t make sense to me.

Yes, I agree that there is a stigma of the crazy cat lady who potters around alone in her big house with 12 cats and never interacts with the outside world. She’s boring, she’s obsessed with her cats, and she doesn’t know how to be social.

But, there is a big difference between having one cat in an apartment in the middle of the city and the crazy cat lady. Nevertheless, the stigma endures and men seem to go running when they find out I have a cat.

Case in point, I was out with Ms Potted Plant and her then love interest, Mr. Geek the fourth. Mr Geek the fourth brought along one of his friends. We will call him Mr. Cat-hater. When Ms Potted Plant informed Mr. Cat-hater that I owned a cat, the flood gates opened. Mr. Cat-hater spent the next 40 minutes insulting women who owned cats. He threw out the statistic that if there were 10 women he could date and only 1 had a cat, he’d date all other 9 – no matter how attractive the cat owner was – before even considering dating the woman with the cat. He probably would never date the woman with the cat even if she was the last woman on earth (yes, I asked him this). And no, he wasn’t allergic….

Note, Mr. Cat-hater had never met me before, and I did not indicate that I was interested him in the least. I just wanted to have a fun evening out at the bars and be left alone. But he continued bringing up the subject – bar after bar after bar – until I just had to leave….

And so I ask, what is this fear of a woman with a cat? I would argue that owning a cat might indicate some positive connotations about a woman…

  1. She is responsible. You have to keep another being alive, so you have to be relatively responsible, right? Bodes well if you are looking for the future mother of your children …but even if you aren’t, it probably means that she isn’t a total flake.
  2. She is caring. Most women who get cats do so because they want some sort of companionship. And so, they have the capacity to care for something besides themselves. Probably the same story for a woman who has a dog – and yet, they don’t have the same stigma, do they?
  3. She has a more flexible schedule. Definitely it is more flexible than a woman with a dog… In fact, I think many women choose to get a cat as a pet, because it allows them to keep their active social schedule while having a pet.

And I would argue that it is pretty clear as soon as you meet me that I am a far cry from the crazy cat lady. I have only one cat. I have a good group of friends here and in other parts of the country. I am out most nights on the weekend with friends and many during the week. I often travel to visit friends and to see interesting things. I have regular volunteer activities as well as many outdoor interests including hiking, running, rock climbing, snowboarding, etc.

But, my point is not to necessarily convince you about myself, but to argue for all those other great women out there who might have a cat, but who are great catches. Don’t dismiss them.

I say we bring back Cat Woman as the cool (even if a little mis-guided at times), interesting woman. She’s hot, she’s sexy, and she’s smart– what more could you want?

Until our next date,

Ms. WS