It’s come to my attention that we need to talk about commitment and what it means. When my ex and I broke up, one of his main concerns was commitment. Namely, he didn’t want to make one because he was too afraid to break it. He felt like he would be “holding me back” or “making promises he had no idea if he could keep.” The kind of commitment I was envisioning was the commitment to continue to get to know each other and see where things went, not the commitment to get married and start making babies. I never even mentioned that, but in his head, I that’s what I was asking for. He was divorced, so I understand that this notion of commitment took on a certain complexity for him.But here’s the thing: what he was saying was hardly original. I’ve heard a variation on this theme from so many men I’ve dated. Divorced or not. In talking to my friends, I understand that I am not alone. Most women — and some men — I know have heard it too. Keep reading »
When I was in middle school, my school sold these things called Candy Grams the week leading up to Valentine’s Day. For a dollar, a lollipop and a note would be delivered to the person of your choosing on February 14th. I was in luuurrrvvvve with this boy Jesse. He looked like a young Leonardo DiCaprio and his family owned an amusement park and because we did alphabetical seating, he sat behind me in every class. We kind of became friends, meaning he copied all my homework and cheated off of me on tests. Friendship! The only thing I wanted in the whole world was a Candy Gram from Jesse. A thank you for helping him pass 7th grade perhaps? An admission of his love for me? I stayed up every night that week imagining what my Candy Gram from him would say. February 14th came and went. No Candy Gram from Jesse. I got in the car at the end of the day and started to cry. My Grandpa picked me up from school every day. I was sulky and hormonal in that special 13-year-old kind of way and he would try to get me to laugh by pretending like I was on trial and he was presenting my case. I don’t know why exactly, but he was really into this game.
“Ladies and gentleman of the jury…” he would start. I would stare out the window with my arms crossed or roll my eyes. So, on Valentine’s Day, I got in the car and he started. “Ladies and gentleman of the jury, today we are here to determine why this beautiful young lady is crying…” Keep reading »
They say no good deed goes unpunished, and I agree. I’ve seen plenty of evidence in my own life: For example, one time, I baked a pie for my then-boyfriend, and his two best friends. They were coming over to watch the Oscars, and I said, “Oh, great! I’ll make a pie.”
“Great!” he said.
My then-boyfriend and his friends planned a boys’ afternoon out. They’d have their afternoon out, then pick up food for dinner. Tacos? Pizza? Chinese? We decided on pizza. We’d all reconvene later at my place for pizza, pie, and Oscars.
But then they arrived, all three of them, having picked up individual pizzas for themselves, and having forgotten to get one for me. This may – may – have been forgivable, if they’d made an appropriate apology, and offered to run out in that moment to pick me something up. But no. The boyfriend’s friends shrugged and said, “Oh, crap. Sorry.” When they finished their pizzas – each man offered me a sliver of their own – they left all the garbage of their takeout food strewn across the kitchen table. It sat there even as they waved goodbye, and escorted themselves out. I turned to my boyfriend, desperate for some acknowledgement of how absurd his friends’ behavior had been. He just shrugged, though, like boys will be boys, and turned back toward the TV. Keep reading »
Let me make this clear: I don’t have a problem with dating a divorced man. No problem at all.
What I do have a problem with is when a divorced man isn’t up front about it.
Menfolk of the world, I’m going to lay down some real talk right now: if your online dating profile doesn’t disclose that you are divorced, the moment you explain you are really “divorced” and not just “single,” I immediately think you are acting shady. Even if you weren’t trying to hide it! Even if you just married her so she could get a green card! Even if you have been divorced so long you’ve forgotten her middle name! Keep reading »
So, I’ve still been thinking a lot about the New York Times’ assertion that courtship has kicked the bucket. I jotted down some thoughts about that. You can read them here. One point that the piece makes that I agree with is that lots of daters out there — men and women both — are unclear about the difference between a date and a non-date. Let’s review a few “dating experiences” cited in the piece… Keep reading »
Soooo, “Girls” is back. Which means lots of watching them make bad decisions so that we don’t have to. Hooray for vicarious learning! As I watched the season two premiere, I had a bunch of thoughts: How come I never get invited to house parties anymore? Am I old? I should do more karaoke. How are these characters managing to make sooo many mistakes with their exes in the span of 30 minutes? Oops! I”ve done many of these myself. Geez, they make it look so fun and quirky!
In real life, we are well aware that messy ex situations are not fun and quirky. Oh no. They are comp-li-cated and emotionally fraught. After the jump, let’s review all the mistakes that Hannah and the gang made so that we can avoid making them in the future. Spoilers ahead, obviously. Keep reading »
It’s not your fault he cheated. (Guys, same goes for you. It’s not your fault she cheated.) Cheating is not the fault of the cheatee. Are we all clear on that? You didn’t cause it. There was nothing you could have done to prevent it. Yes, it was probably a symptom of a problem in the relationship, but cheating is not the appropriate way to handle such problems. People who cheat are selfish cowards.
I say this as a person who cheated once. I’m not proud of it. It happened when I was much younger, when I was too scared to talk about the doubts I was having about the relationship. It wasn’t my boyfriend’s fault. He did nothing wrong. I was the asshole with the bad coping skills. I’ve grown up since then. I’ve learned how to talk about my feelings. I would never cheat on anyone again because I understand why it’s not the right thing to do. It doesn’t solve any problems, it only creates more. I don’t consider myself a dishonest person for having cheated, but I do think I was a misguided person at the time.
I’m making this confession, not for sympathy, but in response to this article I came across called “10 Ways To Keep Him From Cheating.” Making it even more offensive is the fact that this piece was written by a licensed relationship counselor. She says:
“Most men do not cheat because they don’t love you anymore. Men cheat because they want more variety in their sex lives. Some complain of being bored. They want to feel adored by their partners; they want to assert their freedom; they are tired of disappointing you; they want a partner who places them at the center of their life, and they no longer feel like the priority in yours.”
Keep reading »
Daters of the Friskyverse, I have been tossing around the idea of writing about dating resolutions for the New Year. And then I thought, Nah. Last year, my resolution was to make the first move. I did. We dated for a while and then broke up. We’re still friends. Resolution accomplished. Good for me. I’m sure you’re planning to make some dating resolutions of your own, aren’t you? Or maybe you’re not. Maybe you’re bitter about dating right now. I wouldn’t blame you if you were. It’s fucking hard.
I decided to go in a different direction this week. I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to all of you who’ve read this column in the past year. I want you to know that it means a lot to me. It’s really difficult to write about your dating life in a public forum — especially when you’re trying to muddle through it yourself. I get so wrapped up in all of the emotions and trying to process them and getting over my insecurities enough to write about them that sometimes I forget anyone reads this column. (Or, at least, it’s easier to tell myself that no one reads so I don’t freak out every week.) Keep reading »
In case you missed it, the guy and I split right after Thanksgiving. That means that the weeks leading up to my birthday and Christmas have been kind of lame. Actually, that’s not true. They weren’t half bad, just kind of meh emotionally. You could say I haven’t been brimming over with holiday spirit.
But still, I’ve been doing lots of yoga, reading depressing fiction, shopping impulsively for tights, watching cooking shows and spending time with friends. I went to a fancy spa and got a massage for my 34th birthday. And then I consumed massive amounts of Blue Point oysters and champy with my best friend. It was solid way to celebrate my birthday/ the world not ending. Everything was fine until someone close to me said: “You shouldn’t wait, you should just get back on OK Cupid right away.” Keep reading »
Every dealbreaker that any boyfriend I’ve ever had has shown itself by interacting with his family. The guy whose father had been cheating for years? Yeah, he cheated on me. The guy who seemed paranoid that I’d dislike his kids? He was super insecure. In retrospect, I should have heeded these warnings more. My therapist will give me three gold stars for saying this and it’s true: we all have been molded by our experiences with our families, for good or for ill. And that’s why most of us are crazy.
After the jump, six booby traps to look out for if you spend the holidays with his family: Keep reading »