let me tell you a little story….it's a story that is mostly humorous and comical… filled with a touch of disappointment and a "WTF" thrown in there a few times.
it's a story of Katie's dating life or lack there of. I don't like dating, I don't like feeling the pressure to be the perfect version of myself when I know good and well that no one is really 100% of the time that way. and because of who I am, I choose to put even more pressure on myself. Dating is supposed to be fun and light and exciting and casual and I look at it like I have one shot at going on one date with one guy in order for him to be "the one". It's insane!!! Part of it is my own fault and part of it is the way the dating world works and my experience, or lack there of in relationships. It's comical to me when I hear about other friends going on dates and how they look at it and honestly, it just terrifies me. I would rather be friends with someone first and let it grow into more…that's what I prefer but that can't happen if I'm going on dates.
After many a year NOT dating and my broken heart finally truly on the mend, I decided it was finally time to try this again. (I'm serious, this is like a once a year, every few years deal for me). Yes, have been on all the dating apps with little to no success but about over a year ago I matched with this guy on Tinder and he seemed really sweet and nice and we started chatting on there and then started texting. At this particular time, I was not really wanting to go on dates or date anyone, just to talk to someone to distract me from my unrequited love (I know it's dramatic but what else do you say when you love someone and they don't love you back?) So I wasn't really in a place for actual dating…too scary I wasn't ready to give up on my heart. We continue to talk for a few months and I finally get up the nerve to actually meet this guy. He was patient and I think I was hoping I would piss off the other one enough that he would realize his true feelings for me. And let me just be frank, life doesn't work like that….that is in the world of fairy tales where the girl ends up with the boy….not. real. life. and p.s. me doing that did not make him jealous. AT ALL. alas, I digress…back to my story.
This guy was kind enough to come to my neck of the woods and we met a sports bar I've never been to so we could watch the Carolina basketball game. (I'm a big fan) I was super nervous but kind of excited! I felt like I knew him pretty well so I would be more at ease. I arrived first and I saw him driving to find a parking spot and when he saw me got super excited and was waving so big. I remember rolling my eyes and thinking "oh lord here we go". I waited for him at the front door and he asked for a hug and so I hugged him and as we were walking inside, he held the door and it made me feel uncomfortable (why I have NO idea) but it did and so being me, I said "Oh you don't have to do that!" Ugh I'm such an idiot sometimes. We had to wait a bit for a table and so we sat on this small bench and then he tried to touch my thigh right above my knee and I said "oh that's a little too much too fast". I think it made him feel uncomfortable but I met him less than 5 minutes before!!! Again, I do NOT move fast. AT ALL. Not going to apologize for it either anymore. We eventually sit and talk and hang out and eat and drink and he shared very interesting things….talked a lot about his daughter (I get it) and about his ex-wife which I found rather odd. And how she was a virgin on their wedding night (COOL. THAT doesn't make me feel uncomfortable or weird or anything……….) And honestly, I was thinking about the other guy and was comparing the two pretty much the whole time. I never really relaxed and didn't feel like I was myself but in all honesty, I realized I wasn't ready. I wasn't over things and I didn't want to be unfair to this nice guy. I feigned illness so I could go home…and yes that is bad but it had been 3 hours and I was mentally exhausted. He walked me to my car and planted a kiss. WHICH by the way, I had mentioned multiple times while we were eating that I like and need to take things slow. Sorry but to me, that is not slow and you clearly didn't hear me when I said SLOW. I said goodbye and got the hell out of there.
Now I know that slow is different to each person so I respect that and I knew very well and good I was comparing in my mind the whole time and this guy simply did not live up to what, in my mind, is my standard. Regardless if things didn't work out with the other guy, doesn't matter, he set a standard and will continue to be my standard….good or bad as that may be. And I'm ok with that, especially now.
After our date, I blew the guy off for a few days and decided I needed to be honest with him. I told him that I really liked him (maybe a stretch) but I was just NOT in a place to be dating. I was getting over someone still and my heart was not ready or willing to move on. And he accused me of lying and not be truthful but in fact it was the honest truth. We went back and forth a few times and he finally got I was telling the truth. I still wasn't ready to be dating and his intenseness with me freaked me out some so I know that was part of it too.
Alas, we continued to talk off and on from April last year until now. Nothing too serious or deep but he always seemed to reach out when it was like I was getting too wrapped up in the past with the past. It was comical because I felt like God was giving me a sign. I tried to listen and be really open to going out with him again and giving him a real chance. I felt he deserved it after kind of stringing him along even though I wasn't being too forward or saying how much I liked him or wanted him. Just felt he deserved another chance. Oh and he drunk texted me one night…something really inappropriate…it was funny but definitely made me feel uneasy. Oh and he's 40ish so that makes it even more comical and slightly, WTF, you're 40.
FINALLY I got up the nerve and we decided to meet up….last Friday to be exact. Originally we were going to meet on Wednesday and I was FREAKING out. FREAKING out. I was so nervous and I felt I was because he continued to say how much he liked me and was so into it. And I knew I was putting too much pressure on this date and myself but I couldn't stop myself. It wasn't fun and casual anymore, I was back to looking at it as I get one chance, one guy, one shot. And I had been sick the week before so I postponed until Friday and there would be alcohol involved so it would be easier for both of us. I panicked about it all day and talked to way too many people about but I knew I had to go no matter what. I needed all questions answered and to really see what this guy was all about. I ended up messaging him about my nerves because I felt it would help and it really did. He told me no pressure and that we would be friends regardless and he was nervous too so I felt like "Ok I can do this." I psyched myself out and I was going to do it.
As I walk up to him, I said a little prayer…asked God to be with me, help me be open, really give him a chance, and to be myself. We said hi and hugged and here apparently is where it goes south. I was nervous so I said something silly- "Oh it's casual Friday?!" I was in a dress. I felt over dressed compared to him and plus I was just trying to break the ice. I wasn't intending to be critical of his outfit (although he was wearing a winter fedora so I was internally critiquing that…who wouldn't? It was 1000 degrees outside). I remembered he likes to open doors so I let him this time without saying anything rude and we were seated. We kind of talked about my nerves and there were many lauls in the conversation so in order to keep it going, I asked a lot of questions. I didn't want to feel uncomfortable so I just kept up with the questions. He chugged his beers and whenever I did talk (p.s. he did not ask me ONE question about myself. not. one.) he stared everywhere except my face. My hands, my arms, my chest (mostly there) and never once looked at my face when I was talking or sharing a story. He didn't seem interested in what I had to say or getting to know me at all. Cool. His staring made me feel incredibly uncomfortable and I was trying to ignore it and just chalk it up to nerves. Now remember, I told him earlier that day how nervous I was and that I needed to take things slow, I kept saying it and was being up front and honest. Don't think there is anything wrong with that….I was being true to myself. And what does he do? Awkwardly reaches across the table and tries to grab my hand. Which then I literally snatched it back so fast I didn't even realize I did it. CLEARLY did not want him holding my hand let alone touching me. It was not because he repulsed me (although on some level he totally did) but it was about the fact that he completely ignored and disrespected me in my requests for things to go slow. SLOW. and again, while hand-holding is not slow though awkward when you're sitting across from one another, it's fast enough to me. at least with him. SO there was that. And soon enough it was time to go and he made a comment about how he would "pick up the tab since I'm going to buy dinner in a few". GEE. THANKS SO MUCH. That bothered me too but again, I was trying to do this whole thing in a different space and different mindset than before. I was still not feeling comfortable with physical stuff but hey, it's been one time. Give me a flipping break PARTICULARLY with my lack of experience.
He asks me to walk with him to his car so we did and asked him not to make any moves because I didn't want to be taken off guard again and I was trying to get him to respect what I had asked and said so many times before. He awkwardly gave me a hug and we said goodbye.
I left feeling relieved and proud of myself for going….and as the night went on I knew it wasn't right. If I really liked him, I would have been more willing to let him hold my hand or kissing me or if it was right, he would have respected me more. So I was proud I went but needed to tell him I didn't want to move forward in a relationship. I put it off and really didn't hear from him much so I thought maybe he wasn't feeling me either. I was kind of cold. :O
I talked with Jason and he helped me with what to say and so Tuesday I got up the nerve to text him finally. I said exactly what Jason told me to and felt good about it…..I was kind but was honest and was allowed to not feel it. He responded with "I figured as much. 14 months is a really long time to go in between meetings. And I wasn't feeling the same as I did last year anyways." Ok. I can respect that….it kind of stung because I was MORE myself this time so I did feel a tinge of rejection but let's be honest, I didn't spend that much time with him nor did I spend that much emotion on him so he didn't deserve me to be upset. I replied and said "OK. Well I'm glad then I guess you feel the same. We both need to be honest with ourselves and each other. So I guess we won't be friends then either?" To which he replied….and it's too long to go into on here…but he replied. A big. Long. Rant and what I'm calling a text attack about how terrible I basically am. He reiterated he wasn't feeling it and that he was super offended about my comment about his outfit (thus why I said that above) and went into all the reasons he dressed that way….I don't care! I didn't care then! I said it because I was nervous!!!! (other than the winter fedora). And that he could tell I wasn't into him so he bailed and didn't care and that we couldn't be friends because he was just saying that because he was hoping for something romantic to come from it and that's what he gets for being positive and hopeful about it turning into a relationship and plus he needs to clear his mind and focus on the positive things in his life, and honestly, I'm not one of them. END. (also he blocked me on FB…again, how old are you?!)
speechless. it left me in tears if I'm being honest. It felt like a verbal attack. written attack I guess but I felt attacked. I chose not to respond because he didn't deserve to hear from me again but OMG & WTF. I had been honest and upfront with where I was at and what I needed the ENTIRE TIME. I did not lie and I did not lead him on so if he thought I was just joking with him, I was not. I was as honest as I could possibly be. And it all became more about his unnecessary text attack…he doesn't really know me or what I meant by all that or anything about me because he never took the TIME to ask me questions. It became highly evident he cared about having sex and getting some then he did about me. I was mad at myself for believing he was a good guy and made me really question, what is wrong with me?! I shared all this with way too many people but I felt like I needed support. I needed backing. I needed someone to say I was right and he was just being a complete ass for no reason other than he was upset and disappointed.
I have to be honest, this whole thing threw me. It made me question everything and everyone and it was so small and trivial. It was one date. No big deal. But why could he not have said something else and just been cordial about it? Fine if you didn't feel it, great. Makes it easier in a way. But no. He attacked my character and who I am and that is what hurt. I am still trying to process through it and let it go….it's in the past and it really is a good lesson more than anything.
So. Here I am. Still pretty much in the same place. BUT that is OK. I still have a standard. I did not give him anything (literally, Thank you God) and he doesn't know anything about me obviously. I was true to myself, I let myself be open and that is really all that matters. I am and will remain proud of myself for that. I just can't let myself wait another 3 years to go on another date…..even though I am scared about it….I gotta keep doing it. No matter what. God guided me to this situation for a reason and while I have an idea what it is, I know he has something even better in mind for me 🙂
Thanks for reading….I hope you laughed and cringed and well, someone out there may relate.
Cheers to this life….it's pretty great
all my love,