1. Running while frustrated/angry helps you go longer. Evidence below
2. I’d rather be alone than unhappy. Clichéd I know, but can you say epiphany? There are things I can’t compromise on that I thought I could compromise on, only to discover after many tears have been shed, that there are things I cannot, absolutely cannot, compromise on. I tried and failed and know myself well enough too know that this is so not a case of try until you succeed.
3. It is better to have some sex than to have no sex, but it is infinitely better to have no sex than to have bad sex and/or to have sex outside a committed relationship. I say this not to judge those who enjoy no-strings-attached sex, but merely to remind myself of what I have learnt in the just-over-a-decade that I have been sexually active: the best sex I have had was with people to whom I was committed and from whom I could make demands regarding my pleasure.
4. I like being in a relationship and having someone to love and being loved -who doesn’t? But you know what I like even more? Not being heartbroken. Looking back on all my heartache over the years I have come to the conclusion that at least 80% of the time I let bad situations go on for far longer than a wiser woman would have, and ignoring the signs pointing towards the exit inevitably led to devastation and despair on my part. Do I want to be lonely forever? Of course not. But that’s not an option really because not being somebody’s wife is not equal to being lonely. Alone and lonely are not the same word. And for what it’s worth, I meant what I said above: I’d rather be alone than unhappy. This is about learning to properly vet men, and knowing the difference between what is important and non-negotiable, and what is merely nice-to-have.
5. Biblical principles of manhood and womanhood are valuable and make up a significant part of my worldview. This means that I am a believer in gender roles in marriage and in the home, but I also believe that those are best defined by the two people in the marriage and in the home. For myself, having been both father and mother in my home for a long time (I’m a single mother to a now 10year-old), I know that I do not want to be in a relationship where that status quo is maintained. If I get married, it will be to a man who knows the role of a man in the home as father and husband and is willing to play it. I won’t have to teach him or show him what to do, he’ll know,and be ready,willing and able to play his part. And yes, I’d rather be alone than be the man in my relationship with a man. I know there are many iterations of relationships and I’ve probably been in more than one of them – trust me when I say a relationship in which gender roles are not defined to mutual satisfaction does not work for me.
6. The issue of sex. I like sex. I love sex. I enjoy it. Having said that, I enjoy the freedom of committed sex far more than I have enjoyed the sex I’ve had in flings, or even by myself. (Yes, I’m that girl. And i over-share a lot and you must just deal.) If you’ve never had sex with someone with whom you can be completely and totally yourself then you have never really truly understood the joy of sex. This begs the question – if the sex was that good then why am I alone? Because great sex outside of greatness in other facets of life won’t sustain a great relationship. Just like buckets of money outside of buckets of other things that are important won’t sustain a great relationship. So what am I saying? I’m saying that while sex has been a driving factor in some of my past relationships, I know better now. I now know that loving the sex and letting that convince me I love the man and that he loves me is a bad idea. I know that for me, sex outside of exclusive commitment is a bad idea and a huge waste of time. There is no sex in the world that is worth the pain of heartbreak. Absolutely none. I’d rather deal with my raging hormones myself than make myself vulnerable to heartbreak by letting someone into my life who does not value being there and who will therefore inevitably hurt me. I am done with that m.o.
A lot of the above is repetitive but that’s because these are things I’m still working out in my head and in practical terms. What do these things look like when you’re my age, a working mother, and not 19 and about to go off to college? What I know now is what I’ve just said -no sex, no matter with whom, is worth the heartbreak I’m experiencing now. I mention the sex because it was quite simply the.best.ever – and yet here I am, alone once more. That’s because I chose to give up my cookie to someone who did not value it, or me, in the way I needed and wanted him to. Did he love me? Yes he did, I believe that. Unfortunately for me, he just loved himself and other things more. So when push came to shove and he found himself in the position of having to choose, he didn’t choose me.
I want a man who loves me enough to choose me every single time. I want a man whose planning and strategizing is undertaken with my happiness in mind – because when I am in love my life revolves around my partner. How great would it be to want the very same things that your partner wants to give you, and to give them the very things that they in turn desire? How much less pain would I have in my past if I’d simply chosen men who were also actively choosing me, instead of choosing men that I attempted to teach how to choose me? No more. I’m done with that. I’ll be thirtyfreakingthree next month – I do not have time to deal with ‘potential’. I’m ready to be married, so I’ll only give my time to men who are ready to marry. If you’re still figuring things out, not sure if you’re ready to settle yet, don’t know whether or not you want kids, don’t know what kind of life you desire – keep walking cos i’m not here for that. I know what I want (for the most part, mmkay) and I don’t have the inclination to mentor a grown man through life.
Having said all that, please don’t judge me if I give in to evolutionary tendencies and drop my panties for the next broad-shouldered hunk to come along. Shit happens.