Dating is a Learning Curve

I know this is public… And obviously not every situation has to be shared through this. But I did this so that I could learn and so that people can hopefully learn from my mistakes…
I dated my first boyfriend for a year. That was a rough one, I invested so much emotionally, physically and mentally, when I realized things weren’t going to work, I struggled to end the relationship. I tried twice in March to tell him I was done, I half way tried again at the end of March. Telling him that I needed to be done, but didn’t tell him I WANTED to be done.
I didn’t want to hurt him. He is far more sensitive than me and I didn’t want to hurt his feelings. Then I realized that hanging onto him was only hurting both of us more. It was hurting me more because it was adding to my stress, I found that every other night I was venting about something. And him, he was trying to find ways to relocate so he could be 4 hours closer putting him only 30 minutes away from me so we could actually see each other.
I got tired of skipping things I wanted to do because I was trying to spend time with him because I knew if I didn’t take that time, I wouldn’t get to talk to him. Our evenings were screwed up… My family is busy getting kids ready for bed, getting everyone showered and ready for the next day. So after dinner at 6:30-10 I’m doing absolutely nothing. About 10:00 pm mom wants to spend time with me till she goes to bed.
My ex-boyfriend on the other hand wanted to watch movies from 6:30-10 and would get huffy because I would go talk to mom and by the time I got him called back, he was already in bed. OR I would choose to talk to him over spending time with mom, and he would sit on his phone the whole time. Making me regret not going and talking with mom.
He took me to a military ball back in November and I never told anyone because I was ashamed of the fact that he did this to me and I still stayed with him, once his buddies left, he spent the last hour and a half on his phone. So I sat there watching everyone else talk while he played on fb. On top of that, he was supposed to pay for half of my plane ticket up there. He told me he would pay for my dress and the hotel… Then he tells me that he paid for one dinner for me, my mom and my two sisters, and paid for the tickets for the ball for myself and him so felt we were even… I had spent well over $500… Which, I was relying on halving at least $300 back.
To begin listing problems I was having, his cursing had gotten too much. I don’t curse so it eventually wears on your ears when the smallest mishap causes a string of curse words. He would lose a game on his phone and you would hear “You Mother F’ing, son of a f’ing B****, you F’ing F’er,” and I would ask him if that was really necessary and he’d answer back with a short tempered yes.
He was obsessive over the fact that he would always carry a gun around my mom’s husband because he wanted to have the upper hand if her husband did something he didn’t approve of. He told me on multiple occasions that he would shoot her husband if he felt like it was necessary.
He hated both of my parents, regardless of the fact that they were nice to him despite the fact that they did not approve of him. But rather than trying to get to know them, he chose to avoid them in every way possible.
When it came to his temper, he couldn’t handle owning it and controlling it. It was always “well so and so made me angry.” “Only you can let them make you angry.” “No. They made me get angry.” He could own up his mistakes in a heartbeat when it came to me. Which was something that pulled me closer to him. But when it came to his temper as long as it wasn’t me, it was everyone else that made him angry. Or it was his anxiety, apparently his anxiety causes him to have a hot temper too…
Due to respect for him, there were some pretty major things that supposedly played into his anxiety that I cannot publicly say, but I didn’t see those things… I feel like they should have been more obvious, but it took me talking to other people within the army for me to start seeing that the things my ex-boyfriend was telling me weren’t adding up.
Then you start reaching the smaller stuff, like, I do MMA for a reason, I LOVE to roughhouse and pick some sort of play fight. He wouldn’t. In fact, he would get upset if I tried to roughhouse with him. I kept trying to tell him I wasn’t a delicate flower and I don’t get hurt easily but he never would. Or that his sense of humor was wrapped up in Chauvinistic jokes. Whether he actually believed it or not, I can’t say I know for sure, but I was concerned that it would be a matter of time before he decided to transfer that mindset to me if that’s what he liked to joke about and then blame the army for it. He decided that I would need to do the majority of coming to see him because it was more important for him to blow his money on things he wanted to do so he couldn’t afford to come see me. But heaven forbid I didn’t have the money to see him because I have classes I need to pay for… And thus, he would get mad when I wouldn’t take off work because I was/am dead set on getting the classes paid for. He just wasn’t a happy person in general… He wasn’t happy with his life, he wasn’t happy with himself, he carried around his past and put in on a pedestal and coddled it using it to “Ok” how he handled situations and how no one was EVER going to disrespect him.
Anyway, I’m going to give that a break and say this, he was sweet to me. He was amazing, he opened all the doors for me, he paid for all of our “dates” and even when he would ask for help on something more expensive he would still usually pay for it. He had the ability to be very kind hearted and selfless, but I had gotten to the point with everything else, I couldn’t do it. He definitely showed me things to look for in a future husband, but also showed me a lot of things I thought I could handle, but can’t.
When I realized I had developed feelings for someone else, I knew something had to be done fast because I wasn’t going to be the girl who cheated. So two weeks into trying to grow a backbone and tell him I was done, I was getting my timeline out. Saturday I figured out I was done and knew I was done. I didn’t want to tell him that day because he had to work the next morning and if I told him, he wouldn’t sleep that night and then he’d be at work miserable the next day. His schedule was one day on, one day off, so he had Monday off, but between me not wanting to talk to him and him being “busy”, we really didn’t even talk Monday. He worked Tuesday which meant he had Wednesday off. However Tuesday was when I knew I was in trouble because I actually liked this other guy that I work with. So that nailed Tuesday night as the best day. He got off work at 10:30 pm and called me because I missed his phone call on his break while hanging out with this other guy at work, and he had off Wednesday, that gave him Tuesday night and Wednesday to recoup before work on Thursday.
So now that that is over, I’ve heard from him a handful of times, he wanted to tell me that he was willing to change, which was all things I heard before. And that he loved me and he was wrong. But rather than allowing that to pull me in for a 4th time, I called him out and moved on. He later called again, to let me know that even though I am essentially dating, that he and I could still make the relationship work. And he called me again later to let me know he changed his mind, that I’m too immature for a relationship, that I don’t deserve the success he’s going to achieve and that if I had worked as hard as he did for the relationship that we could have made things work. Here again, I called BS and we got off the phone. After that I finally decided I was removing all forms of contact with him. For both his sanity and mine.
I had to reason it out. I cared too much about how he felt and so it took me reasoning why it was bad for him, for me to keep holding onto him. Ultimately he wouldn’t be happy, and if he was happy that I wasn’t happy in the relationship that just brought up a whole new load of problems. I wasn’t going to wait around to figure that out. Or, with the fact that I got to the point I avoided telling people I was dating because if they were interested, I didn’t want to squash that hope, knowing that if anyone took me up on it I would either have to tell my ex or cheat on him… Well, finally someone finally took me up on it asked for my number, asked to go meet up. Luckily for me I had already determined how and when, so it all just happened simultaneously. Naturally he got mad when he found out I was already going out to dinner with a “friend” and I got the lecture about it being too soon and having no time to heal. The problem was that mentally, I was done with the relationship in February. I had come to the grips with the fact that I was done. And I’m one of those people who are kind of emotionally separated anyway. If I decide someone isn’t worth my time, I can walk away without batting an eye. Like with this, I feel bad for him, but I’m enjoying life and after I broke up with him, he was kind enough to show me just how crazy he is which only made sure I knew I made the right choice.
I have a guy momentarily who is trying really hard to be only a friend, but is failing miserably… He’s so funny, because he’s such a boy that it’s actually ridiculously cute… He’s that teenage boy that reaches up to stretch and tries to put his arm around you without you noticing… Except he does it in different ways. Like, sitting on the other side of a bench, he fidgets enough that he works his way so he’s leaned up against me or he grabs a hold of me in play and lets his head “accidentally” fall into my lap… He’s just a dork and I love that about him… He reminds me a lot of my mom’s husband which is something that intrigues me about him… and he’s a complete polar opposite of my ex. He calls me, he texts me, he picks me up from home, or picks me up from work, takes me to the lake to eat dinner… It’s not at all what I’m used to. When he sees me, he leaves his phone in the car or in another room. We can roughhouse and when I tell him he bruised me he laughs and tells me I deserved it… Which, as backwards as it may sound to people who don’t wrestle, I love it! But, he seems to be leaning towards moving away for a job. So we are just supposed to be maintaining a friend status till he decides what he wants to do.
It’s funny though because my parents dropped by his apartment for a surprise visit and he took it in stride, wasn’t expecting it, ran around his apartment “cleaning” which consisted of pushing in a chair, taking his clean laundry out of the living area and into his room, taking his pillow that was on the couch (he was sick) and putting that into his room while he muttered about his immaculate apartment being a wreck… He’s a neat freak… But he did, and afterwards we had an almost 20 minute conversation about how much he liked my parents…
Where my ex, would have lost his crap and would have been going about how dare they drop by like that and not give any warning and probably threatening to shoot them if they ever did it again.
Here’s the thing. Even if this guy does move. I will not at all regret any decisions I have made. Because he gave me needed motivation to leaving a bad relationship and he taught me that there are guys out there who have what I need. He’s also helped me see that city slickers may not be so bad after all, especially when they are willing to explore your world too… And he does, he takes an interest in my MMA and he’s trying to muster up the guts to see the horses… But he’s also the first person to tell you he’s a little Pansy and he needs to man up.
My only regret will be if he decides to move and then I will be legitimately sad. Because I have already allowed myself to get close to him and he’s down now, doing an in person interview for this company… So yeah, I’m feeling a little pouty already.
But, if he moves, I’ll get over myself pretty quick like and know that though this guy is 100 times better than my ex, there’s someone who’s going to be even better than the guy I’m liking now.
And I’m not putting all this out there to publicly bad mouth my ex… I’m putting it out there because all that crap I mentioned, I didn’t see till 7 months into the relationship and then realized there “might” be some issues… Then 10 months in I realized these things couldn’t be ignored, finally the 12th month we had two and a half breakups, each time he pulled me in saying he would change, he screwed up, he’s sorry, give him another chance, and I would allow him to drag me back in.
Don’t do it. If they want to change they will change. They won’t feed you some BS excuse like, “You had to tell me.” Or “Guys don’t take hints.” Because one thing I will say, is there’s guys who joke about not being able to take hints… But I know a few who do even though they won’t admit to it. Because I’ve seen how they treat their wife, or me, or other women. Obviously you can’t be stupid with it, any person deserves to be told, but when it’s something obvious like, your boyfriend is ignoring you and playing on their phone and you tell them that it drives you nuts when people are on their phones while someone is trying to talk to them… That’s a pretty obvious hint…
I think a second chance is fair, after being outright told there’s an issue and this is what it is. That way it gives them an opportunity to fix it, but at this point, I would like to hope that I wouldn’t allow myself to get pulled back in by some sweet talking boy who knows how to play their words.
If a guy or girl cares about you, you’ll know it. You won’t have to play this game of we’re done, I’m sorry, I love you, we’re back together. Every relationship is going to have issues yes… But it shouldn’t be every little thing causing issues, and you definitely should never feel like you aren’t a priority… when friends, or hunting, or fishing, or a flipping phone takes priority over you, there’s a problem.
So, now that I’ve written y’all a 4 page book, I’m going to see if I can go through here and cut some things out to make it shorter… wait… that put it at 5 pages… I got it down to 4 pages… but I cheated and made the margins smaller….
Anyway,
God Bless,
Good Luck,
Jessica

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