Archive for October, 2011

No, Really He’s Not into Me
October 5, 2011

For the past few weeks I’ve been fighting off most of my female friends who are convinced that a romantic rendezvous is just around the corner for a guy friend and me. For those that have close friends of the opposite sex you probably have to deal with this pretty regularly. If one of you is in a relationship than it’s assumed that you two are sneaking around and cheating. If you’re both single then the rumors spread equally fast that you two are meant to be and it’s just a matter of time before you both realize the undeniable attraction that exists.

But here is a crazy thought that for some odd reason never seems to get a lot of traction…

 

We don’t like each other like that!

 

It’s the same phenomenon that convinces everyone that the bartender or barista is hitting on them. No they’re being friendly to get tips. That is all. Please cancel the pottery barn order for monogrammed towels.

I can understand the confusion because in theory you two add up to a couple. Similar sense of humor, enjoys spending time together, share intimate thoughts/opinions and actually listen to the advice that is offered up. If both parties are reasonably attractive than according to the peanut gallery this is a no brainer. But the missing element that everyone seems to brush under the rug is the one that matters most; there’s no sexual attraction.

Women can have an immediate attraction to a guy or it can build over time. Guys have the immediate response or not at all. Sure they can appreciate someone over time but as Patti Stanger says “the penis does the picking” and the penis has given this opportunity a thanks but no thanks. That means game over and the friendship can go on unburdened by any sort of ambiguity to the future.

Friends will be so disappointed and expect you to be heartbroken by this which you may very well be if you had been holding out hopes for something more to blossom between the two of you. However there are also times when you really weren’t into him either. Sure on paper you might think it’s a reasonable match but you also know that there are more than a few habits and personality traits that make you want to bloody his nose. These issues are tolerable with a friend because you can just walk away or take a break to avoid those obnoxious moments. That escape doesn’t exist in a Love situation so you are forced to suck it up and deal with it because violence is never the answer no matter how dumb he is being.

To save yourself from a lot of exhausting conversations with your friends its best to follow a “less is more” philosophy. Sure you and this guy may talk every day but you don’t need to share that. If you shared a funny story of his hold off for a week or so before sharing a follow-up. If you two hang out maybe mention the other people that are there first or leave him out all together. How often do you actually list every single attendee at a party anyways? If they ask, be honest because if you lie about it and they find out then it adds fuel to the fire causing them to think that some super secret love connection has been made. Also be sure to reference other guys. It can create a natural state of confusion if every other time you reference a male his name is in the sentence causing others to believe there is an importance that doesn’t actually exist.

Guy friends are so much fun and it can be incredibly aggravating when friends try to add something that isn’t there. By keeping your references of him to a minimum you protect yourself from some truly annoying and repetitive conversations.

 

Doing the Mexican Hat Dance on His/Her Heart
October 5, 2011

Breaking up is hard to do. No one wants to be the bad guy so we all act like scared chickens praying for the other person to meet their celebrity crush or suffer a coma or anything to get out of the awkward conversation. Girls will wait a guy out to make him the jerk. A guy will do every possible passive aggressive tactic to get the girl to finally pull the trigger so they don’t have to be the bad guy even though they know that label is inevitable.

This is one of the major times that brutal honesty is essential. It will be uncomfortable and painful but without the killer blow the wound never has the ability to close up, it just gets nasty and infected by confusion and hope. When the time comes to break up with your significant other the saying “cruel to be kind” is accurate and necessary.

This phrase actually came from my mom after one of my sisters break-ups. She had been trying to break up with a guy for awhile but wasn’t able to follow through. A chat with mom telling her to “cowgirl up” and she went out to the front step on a mission; to put them both out of their misery by ending their relationship. It wasn’t angry or vicious but blunt and most importantly honest.

 

We’re over period the end.

No you can’t fix it I don’t want to be with you anymore period the end.

No we still can’t go to the prom together goodbye period the end.

 

Are you getting the general concept? No wiggle room means that there is no way for misinterpretation of the sincerity of your sentiment or that you might give him another chance later.

It’s called closure and for whatever reason no one wants to be the one to deal the deadly blow even though it’s essential for both parties to move on properly. Without this very concise conversation one or both parties won’t fully give up the hope that something will change and the relationship will resume. Then when the other person starts dating someone else you are doubly injured as if they are breaking up with you over again. I’ve had too many nights with a friend sobbing into a box of Kleenex because deep down she was still convinced that they were going to get back together.

For the person doing the breaking up you must be able to get over yourself and the guilt you might suffer from being the villain. It has to be done and if you do it right the first time it’s the last awful conversation that you two will have to have. Try to tell yourself that a single blow is significantly less painful than weeks, or months of random jabs and cuts that are unavoidable when you leave a window, door, anything open for a possible rekindling. Guys, the girl is going to cry either way. You choose have her cry one time or sporadically over weeks and weeks?

So ladies and gentleman, if you’re in a relationship you’re desperate to run from, do the humane thing and end it swiftly. Don’t drag out the misery or you both will suffer for longer than necessary and you’re not doing anyone any favors. Letting someone down easy is just the opposite so quit kidding yourself that you’ve actually attained closure if you haven’t done the dance.

The Chameleon
October 4, 2011

We’re all guilty of making small adjustments for the guys in our lives. You actually learn some of the players on his favorite sports teams or learn the lingo for a favorite hobby/activity. We do this to show that we care and that we are willing to make sacrifices for the betterment of the relationship. It’s about compromise and in order for a relationship to survive, each partner has to give a little bit.

For some odd reason women can’t find the middle ground with this concept. They either dive in head first giving up any personal identity or they break up with a potential soul mate because he doesn’t want to spend his entire Saturday watching a Project Runway marathon which you so lovingly recorded for him to get him all caught up with the season. Let’s start with the first part of this which I call the Chameleon. From the trailer for Eat, Pray, Love it looks like Julia Roberts is notorious for adapting to the surroundings of her partner. But this goes far beyond learning how to play poker or Halo, this is a complete removal of anything you. If he’s a vegan activist, guess who’s spending the summer rescuing puppy mill dogs and sipping a kale smoothie. If he’s a member of the Tea Party you are now at every rally and your Twitter and Facebook statuses look like they were written by FOX News. This could go on and on but I think you get the idea.

The only issue is that in making all of these concessions you are in fact creating a major blow-up that has the potential to destroy this relationship you’ve been working so hard to protect from demise. Once you toss all of the parts of you that you once held dear a tiny seed of resentment forms. And with each change that seed grows and grows until one day you wake up and look at yourself and realize you aren’t actually there anymore. Do you even know what you’re saying or doing anymore? Do you know why? You’ve been so scared to express an adverse opinion or idea that you’ve stopped thinking completely. It doesn’t matter if you like the movie because his opinion becomes the “we” opinion and that’s the only one that matters. While out with your friends you feel this panic tightening in your stomach. How can you respond to their questions if he isn’t there to tell you how you’re meant to feel? God forbid you make the wrong guess and it comes out later that you differ on a subject. The whole relationship could crumble in that instance and all of the effort that you’ve put forth to get you to this point will be for not. So to avoid a catastrophic incident you remove yourself from situations that could be detrimental. He has no qualms going out without you because he probably doesn’t know that this personality that you’re displaying is a facade. So you either join his crew or stay home, where it’s safe. And that seed that was planted the day you donated all of your leather goods or items with animal by-products continues to grow until you can’t take it anymore.

The saddest part is that this can take years to become unbearable. It’s one of the most common issues that you hear from a partner after a divorce. One simply admits that they just didn’t know who they were anymore. Because sure you can adapt and make changes but a complete personality transplant is an impossible goal to set for oneself.

The majority of your social circle will blame the guy. Clearly he brainwashed you into becoming this new prototype of his perfect girlfriend. While it is almost always easier to blame the new guy over your best bud you might want to resist that urge. Since when did your buddy become a mindless idiot doormat? Last time I checked most women are pretty damn opinionated and can express themselves. This is why I call this Chameleon instead of zombie. This friend is making the conscious decision to mimic the traits that she believes will make herself most attractive to her new partner. She’s trying to mesh and mold into someone that he has so much in common with that he could never imagine fighting or breaking up with. It’s a pre-empted strike against any future conflict.

The best solution is to address the issue before it even starts. Reminding your friends that no one really wants to date their identical personality twin. It’s comfortable sure but it also gets boring. Do athletes only date/marry other athletes or sports fanatics? No! Half of the guys are dating chicks who don’t know a short stop from a running back and they don’t care. Women (not all but a lot) tend to add unneeded pressure to their daily lives because they assume it exists. If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it does it make a sound? The response from the woman is of course it made a sound and it probably crushed a mama squirrel leaving her four baby squirrels without food, shelter, or protection and dear god we have to find that tree right now!

Ignore the urge to add extra pressure and expectations to an already stressful situation and be the real you. The real you that deserves the amazing guy who truly wants YOUR opinion. He will not like you any less if you don’t have matching 49er’s tattoos trust me.