Friday, June 06, 2014

A LIFE WITHOUT WHITE PICKET FENCES

They say hindsight is 20/20, but I have to admit I often wonder who "they" are and why aren't "they" out actively trying to educate dumb asses like me.  "They" seem to be the ones that always jump in first to tell me "I told you so"  whenever I make a huge boo-boo even when "they" never really gave me any warnings in the first place. I can't say that my mother telling me things like "it's as easy to love a rich man as it is a poor man" are the lessons in love I needed as a young girl.  What I needed most was to be told I was beautiful, intelligent and capable to doing anything I wanted to do. 

At the ripe old age of 58 I had an epiphany the other day.  I've spent my whole live thinking I actually preferred 'bad boys" to the nice guys of the world.  I thought living dangerously and on the edge chasing after men with commitment issues and little respect or regard for any female was what got and kept my juices flowing.  Yes, I've questioned my preferences many times and have wondered why I've always equated nice guys as being boring.  My choices throughout life have deeply frustrated me because none of them have led to lasting happiness or a stable relationship.  So at 58, after being totally celibate and without any sort of relationship with a man for 9 years I've come to a rather startling conclusion.  I've always joking told people that sex causes brain damage.  Okay, maybe it wasn't totally a joke because it seems when two people throw sex into a relationship all clarity and common sense leaps out the window...or at least it does in my case.  Nine years ago I finally had enough of the rollercoaster ride and put myself in time out. 

When the light bulb finally turned on, it made the situation look entirely different to me.  I never really connected the dots so I could look at a complete picture.  Now, looking back I can say that my twisted view of what intimate relationships should be like and the kind of man in which I could enjoy lasting happiness with makes total sense to me.  I've spent my entire life chasing after anything and everything that would validate my powerful sense of not being worthy of love and happiness.  It's was always easy for me to believe I didn't deserve a good life and finding people willing and able to prove that point was always a very easy thing to do.  Many people might wonder why anyone would feel unworthy of love and happiness or why anyone would spend a lifetime doing anything that resembles a dog chasing its tail.  It's a complicated issue that dates back as far as I can remember.  For me, maybe it would have been more evident and easier to see if my "break" happened later in life.  For me, that destructive feeling was incorporated into my being at a very young age.  It's just the way it was.  It's just who I grew up being. It's not something I ever questioned because I grew up with the attitude "if the people who love me will hurt me then what's the rest of the world going to do to me?"  With that attitude it's easy to see why I always felt like I was continually swimming upstream against the current. 

I grew up with little self worth.  I held all my pain very close and rarely showed it to anyone.  When I did, it was just a glimpse.  I grew up with no expectations of the future or visions of that house with a white picket fence.  I grew up feeling that fleeting mind blowing sex was a good trade off for a stable life with someone who loved me.  I never knew anyone could have both, so I stuck with the bad boys who seemed more than happy to scratch my insatiable itch. I grew up numbing my pain with drugs and thinking promiscuity was okay. Many times I would say, 'it's a hard job and someone has to do it."  It's sad that I cared so little for myself, but what's sadder is that I believed no one else cared what happened to me either. The giving of myself to another person never held the same value to me as it did to others.  I didn't feel anything about me was really worth anyone's time or effort, so for me, intimacy was a twisted maze in which I became deliriously lost.  

I know now nice guys aren't boring.  Nice guys are just that and being nice isn't the kiss of death everyone always claimed it was.  The problem is that at 58 I'm way behind the curve and I don't know if I'm really interested in jumping back in the pond in search of the right frog to kiss.  I'm definitely not afraid of making mistakes because I've spent a lifetime being well-acquainted with doing just that.  I can't say exactly what the problem is...maybe just fear of the unknown or maybe it's as simple as I've run out of steam.  I can say this...I am open to the possibilities if one ever presents itself to me, but I doubt I'll ever actively go out looking for love.   Being alone isn't the worst thing in life and it's much easier to deal with than always being with the wrong person in a relationship filled with nothing, but fruitless drama. 

8 comments:

  1. Ouch. Too much of this is too close to the bone.
    I grew up knowing that I was much less intelligent than my brothers, less attractive than everyone else, and with strong hints (which I took) that if anyone bothered to pay me any positive attention I should be grateful. Bad attention? I deserved it.
    And I took it all on board, believed it, and am still wrestling my way out from under it.
    Too many people put their white picket fences in my head. Where they didn't, and don't match the decor. Demolition process underway. And some day I will redecorate.

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    1. It sounds to me like we really need to compare notes.

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  2. It's never too late....just taking that all important first step of being open to a new idea is a great start.

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    1. I know I don't know what the future has in store for me and if love does come my way, I think I'm better equipped to treat it accordingly now.

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  3. Madame, from prior posts I deduce you are an artist, inquirer, liberal, religious recusant who values life, rationalist, humanist, pacifist and woman of keen perception and judgement. If I was not already espoused, I would court you myself! All I can say --which is really no help at all-- is that love will come at the most inconvenient time. That is axiomatic, and I feel total confidence in your success. All my best wishes --and thanks for this post that doubtless makes many feel less alone.

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    1. Geo, if I ever become famous I need you as my publicist. Thank you for making not only my day, but my whole month as well.

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  4. you'll never know if you will sink or swim until you jump in! From the sounds of this post, you're ready!

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    1. I think if I ever do actually jump in...before I do, I'll have my friends screen my potential next ex.

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