Posts Tagged by Relationships

Waiting for Mr. Wrong!?

What a smack in the face that in this day and age, not only do we have to risk being heartbroken by those we considered Mr. Right, but to add insult to injury, we actually have to be sidelined and second tiered by those we don’t even really like and are only giving a chance because hey, ya never know. This insulting circumstance can make a girl want to stop the whole dating process altogether. I mean seriously, if it wasn’t for the free gifts and the retrospective amusement, I’d have stopped long ago.

I was invited on a Friday night date to the movies which I accepted despite the fact that the dude during our last date (on which I contributed to the bill) mentioned that he had not only one son that we had talked about earlier, but another daughter by another baby mama somewhere else. In fact, based on that first date, the only real redeeming quality was that… he was nice. A quality sadly rare enough to try again. Since niceness is something that lies at the foundation of the type of relationship I would like, I figured I should see where it goes.

To make a long story short, after rushing home from work to wash my hair and get ready for our date, he ends up not responding to my text asking what his ETA was, and finally hitting me around 9:00 after having gone to happy hour with some co- workers, talking about he was going to go home to shower and change, and then come (40 min drive)…. And not to worry, he can ‘still make it happen.’ I just didn’t respond.

I write about this because it happened last night, but that is FAR from the worst story, or even a bad story. It’s actually quite typical. But wait a minute… this shit is typical? Can we really start to think about this please???

It’s one thing to have to put up with erratic and disappointing behavior from someone you’re actually interested in. But when the practice dudes start getting too big for their britches, it says a lot about the devolution of the whole dating process and relationships in general. When the standard of behavior for men has become so unthinkably low that any ole guy just thinks he can do whatever he pleases, it’s time… Women as a group really need to put their collective foot down. We have to blast that substandard bar of ‘acceptable’ male behavior out of the dirty deep mire from where it’s entrenched and set it up high for the champions. For the athletes, for the strong and determined, for the heart driven winners. I’m rooting for men to sail over that bar. They will reach heightened levels of expectation. They will be respectful and caring. They will be strong enough to show love! But those expectations must exist.

I know from my experience helping kids that if you expect them to do well… they do well. If you expect them to perform poorly, they perform poorly. It’s as simple as that. If we accept substandard and unworthy treatment, that is what we will continue to get. And as long as there are so many women willing to put up with some bullshit, that’s what guys will do. But here’s one woman who refuses to be saddled with the heinous heap of dung that men mindlessly step into. Wipe your feet, clean your face, get some flowers, then come knocking at my door…

Is This an Abusive Relationship?

Is This an Abusive Relationship?

Since this is my first contribution to this website, I feel the need to preface this “article” with a few things: 1) I am not a prolific or poetic writer 2) I don’t mean to be self-indulgent, but…I, like you, am a woman trying to figure out some things about myself, men, relationships and life; therefore I will regularly speak to the things that are currently going on in my life, that maybe you can relate to or have wondered about yourself.

So with that said here we go…

It was about 2 weeks ago that I was sitting on my best friend’s bed at about 11AM on a Saturday. I sleep over there every weekend and usually spend the first 2-3 hours of my day rehashing my most recent breakup, all while apologizing for “obsessing” or “ruminating,” while she nods, contributes her thoughts and assures me that “he’s not worth it.” (She’s a good friend for that). So as I’m rambling on, I asked her

“Is this abuse?”

She already knew about the time that my boyfriend of 2 years came home to his house (I would always stay in his apt when he was out cheating on me with the money he didn’t have, while I researched and worked from my computer, on his air mattress… true story) drunk and not wanting to talk to me about another lie he told. I was badgering him, I will admit. “Why did you tell me that you didn’t go anywhere that Friday night?, when clearly YOU DID because I see a picture on your desktop that has that date on it, and you’re wearing a shirt that says ‘causal sex is ok’.” He begged me to leave him alone because he was drunk, I was ‘trippin’, ‘he wasn’t lying’ and ‘you really have issues with snooping’. I kept at it even when he was hitting me in the arm harder than I felt comfortable. Yet, I continued asking ‘why are you SUCH a LIAR????!!!!!!’ (not yelling…just indignant). At that point, he grabbed me by the neck and “guided” my body down to the bed.

Was that abuse?

I also asked her about the time that we had gotten in to an argument that lasted a day or two (I think he created these arguments so that he could spend time with his other women) and I came over to his house to “make up.” We talked it out, had sex and started to watch TV. As we’re watching TV, he starts slapping me in the face. Now, he wasn’t slapping me hard enough to leave a bruise, or hard enough to sting but JUST hard enough that it didn’t seem playful. But then again, who playfully slaps a woman in the face. I tell him to stop “STOP hitting me in the FACE, FOR REAL!!! Don’t hit me in the face again.” He keeps doing it and saying “ohhhhh what are you going to do?? What are you going to do?” But he wasn’t saying it in a threatening way, so I was confused. I was baffled really. Again, I said “DON’T TOUCH ME IN THE FACE!!!” He kept on though. I eventually started crying because I got scared and this “playful game” was beginning to make me feel uncomfortable. When he saw the tears, he immediately stopped, cuddled me from behind, and said “I forgot how sensitive you are! I was just playing with you and I was getting ready to do the whole ‘aggressive sex’ thing”. We dropped the conversation and didn’t have sex. I told ONE friend who responded with an “ehhhhhhhh.” Yet, I always wondered…

Was that abuse?

Then I asked her about the time that we were sitting in the living room with his boys. I was sitting up and he was lying down so that his feet were touching my thighs. He began to kick me. He had been mad about something earlier but I thought the argument was over. He kept kicking me in the thigh, enough that it was hurting, but not enough that it seemed overtly threatening. I told him to stop kicking me, but he kept doing it, probably about 5 times. After the 5th time, his boy was like “YO…Chill with that!!” I felt stupid because his boy noticed that there was something wrong about the interaction and intervened before I could even process what was going on.

Was that abuse?

As the number of stories accumulated during this conversation I really had to take a good look at myself and ask if I had been in an abusive relationship.

There was the time that we got in an argument about his infidelity and he didn’t want me to leave until the conversation was done. He held me up against the fence to the point where I had bruises on my arms the next day. He jumped in my car, broke the lock off of the door and wouldn’t get out of the car. To be completely honest, he put his hand around my throat that night too. Again, he didn’t “squeeze” my throat so I was able to rationalize this as not being abusive. I eventually called his roommate to come and get him, he got out of the car, threw the keys at my back and called me a “stupid fucking bitch.” After that time, I had visible bruises on my arms from the fence and my mom asked me “is someone hitting you?” and she laughed… because we BOTH knew that those types of things don’t happen in our family. It wasn’t even a realistic question on her part. Yet…was it?

As my friend and I continued rehashing the experiences of subtle physicality in the relationship, I STILL couldn’t figure out if this was in fact an abusive relationship. Yet, it is SO clear that it was. I mean, I broke up with my last boyfriend when he grabbed a fork out of my hand. At that time, I felt that him even beginning to intrude upon my personal space was a clear violation. Yet, with this boyfriend I couldn’t quite figure it out. His pathological lying and passive aggressiveness clearly was playing out in his subtle ability to use physical force to control me. He could put his hands around my neck and lie to himself that he didn’t actually “put his hands on me” because he didn’t use force. Clearly, I bought that lie too.

I was convinced.

I am STILL not sure if the aforementioned anecdotes “count” as abuse. However, I do know that if it was you writing this and me reading it, I’d be wondering WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS CHICK???????? Hopefully, one of you may be reading this and beginning to recognize, that you need to ask yourself … “Was that abuse?”

I hope you ask yourself this question before it turns to blatant and overt abuse that leads to actual physical harm. My situation ended when I caught him cheating AGAIN and he slashed my tires. The tire slashing illuminated the fact that he was in fact an emotionally unstable and violent man. Again, some of us are reading about this tire slashing and wondering “is that really considered violent?”

Well…The police sure thought it was.

Moments a Husband Might Come In Handy

It’s morning. I mash the 1-4 cups button on Mr. Coffee once again and notice a truck pull into my driveway. Big Bob’s Garage Door Repair the sign promises. I glance at the clock. Precisely 8-4pm, right on time. With the presence of a strange man just outside the door, I rush to put on a bra (over my pajamas), sweater and snowboots, take my hair out from the crazy bedtime bun spouting from my head, and step outside to show him what was wrong with the door. Or really, with me.

“I can’t figure out what the problem is.” I explain. “After that blizzard around Christmas, I couldn’t get it to close, it just wasn’t responding.”

Rewind for a moment to the day after last Christmas (2010). The raging blizzard created countless battles that left me feeling frustrated, sad, and annoyed with my alone-ness. Here’s where being a single girl can get thorny (especially if you live in a house).

The Aftermath of the Christmas blizzard:

  • Battle #1- The driveway. Going outside after a snowstorm and seeing a monstrosity of snow blocking you, piled up along the only road you have to freedom is daunting to say the least. Not to mention the damning ice wall at the end of the driveway that has formed because the plows have conveniently cleared all of the snow from the main road by moving it in front of your personal road. This ice wall is the most rigid, frigid, non- cracking, back breaking, stubborn obstacle of all. It can feel like trying to move a mountain with a toothpick. Snowblowers can’t even tackle this thing. You need a semi-automatic, or some form of explosive. (Hmmm… so perhaps a nuclear physicist instead of a husband)
  • Battle #2- The man who wants to ‘help.’ I’m no stranger to shoveling a driveway. It was one of the rare things we used to do as a family, but for one single girl by herself, it’s more than a bit much.

On the post blizzard morning of 12/27/10, I climbed outside into my yard simply unwilling to process the task ahead of me. Instead, I just stood for a while and enjoyed the tranquility. The glistening whiteness everywhere. The profound silence. As I’m deep into the poetry of the moment, 2 dudes walk by and see me by myself in the fresh sea of snow surrounding the yard.

“You wan we do you house?”
I snapped out of a wonderful trance and stared at the two men.


“You need shovel?”

I looked around. Help? Jesus, yes…

“Uhhh, maybe” I played it slick and put on my haggler hat. (I was slick… slick like a sliding seal trying to climb up a water slide).

“We do whole house, driveway, door, everything for you.”

“How much?” Let’s get right to the point gentleman.

I stood in lament of this new world. Who were these grown men?! Gone are the glory days of shovel toting neighborhood kids who came around offering help, wanting to get their little hustle on to make money to blow on candy (myself included).

“How much you pay?” They put it back on me. I thought.

“20 dollars” my honest reply.

The guy laughs.

“We do whole thing for 150.”

One word. Extortion.

It was a smack in the face. A friggin back handed pimp style blow to my solo ego. $150 to shovel the f*%kin driveway dude? Really? That’s more than disrespectful, that just blasphemy. I waved him away and climbed back through the snow towards my garage, newly bitter.

  • Battle #3- Machine Malfunction. So one thing that makes the whole driveway thing a lot easier is a snowblower. If it works right. Mine, however, is temperamental.  It has issues. (Most likely due to my own neglect, not feeding it the oil and gas it needs) Having lost the manual some time ago, I have to re-figure out how to use the machine each year and then hope that it works. After telling the extortionist shovelers to go shove it, I was determined to get the blower on my side. I switched the levers, jiggled the gears, pushed the button, and maniacally pulled on the start chord, but it just grumbled at me. So, being the wise resourceful person that I am, I remembered (or stumbled across) the electric start cord. So I plug it in and PRESTO! It starts! I let the engine run for a while, just until I am slightly nauseous from the fumes, and when I reach that magic window between dizzy and unconscious, I push the machine out of the garage. Alright! Whoo hoo! Wait a minute… Struggling to maneuver the blower, I looked down and noticed it had a flat tire.


Stubborn broad that I am, I figure that if I can lean it over a bit, displacing

the weight on the good tire, I can make it around the driveway…. Worth a try. I leaned in with all of my weight, slipping and pushing, moving in small slow increments, but enough to keep going. My arms became sore, so I began using my leg muscles, pushing the machine around with my foot against the bar. Ridiculous. I got two rows done this way, when suddenly, as I’m turning into the 3rd row, the good tire gets tired and comes off of the axle. Great. I finally give up.

After dragging the machine back into the garage and myself back into the house, I ‘click’ to close the garage door, but the door doesn’t budge. ‘Click click’ Nothing. I feel empty inside. I go stand under the garage door machine staring up as if it was going to say something, mention what was wrong. I try to pull down the door instead, but it wouldn’t budge. Super.

  • Battle #4- Customer Service. What else can I do but call for help? Good thing I have a warranty for these rude machines. I call about the blower first.

“We can have someone out to you…. Januray 20th.”

“Uhhhh… that’s like a month away.”

“That’s the first available date. There are a lot of requests.”

I would think more requests would lead to more technicians, but what do I know. I make the appointment for the 20th, sometime between now or never, and move on to the garage door people. Which brings me back to where I started.

The handy dandy garage repair guy listens to my story, and goes into examine the problem. He presses the inside button, looks at the wall and simply says “It’s not plugged in.” I gasped, realizing then that when I had plugged in the snowblower, I must have unplugged the garage door machine.

“That’ll be $75 please…”

How ridiculous that I should have to pay $75 for someone to stick a plug in a socket! But would having a husband really help with these problems? I guess it depends on the guy, but somewhere in my ever romanticizing head, I always imagine that I wouldn’t have to deal so much with those kinds of situations. But what are those situations? And am I being completely sexist or old fashioned in harboring such thoughts?

Over the summer, my friends and I were laughing at an experience we all had finding a bunch of maggots in the trash can (something about the extreme humidity of the summer). My friend pointed out “We need husbands, cuz I shouldn’t be dealing with that shit.” But are there things that are a man’s responsibility? I certainly wouldn’t want to be told that cooking and cleaning are my responsibility (unless I can fulfill that responsibility by hiring a maid service and making decisions about where to go for dinner).

Or is the whole notion of gender roles irrelevant nowadays? Now that women are making bank, should women and men be able to just buy whatever they need? For example, if I had enough money to throw $150 at the extortionists and have them clear my whole yard, would I care? Would I have felt less alone? Was it the inability to do something by myself that made me feel lonely, or was it something else? Are there things that a husband would bring to the table that can’t be bought? Love, intimacy, yes of course, but beyond that. Should women look to men to provide safety, stability? Or does having more money take care of that?