Posted by: Marie | July 24, 2012

(675) Unfamiliar territory – Part 4 of 5

Post #675
[Private journal entry written on Wednesday, August 24, 2011 about a conversation between my therapist and me – continued from previous post]


(A few more moments passed . . . Edward watched me carefully and I avoided the discomfort of eye contact . . . )

Edward: Do you believe there are good men in this world?

Me: I know there are good men in this world . . . even in my world . . . they just don’t want to date me.

Edward: Have you ever dated a good man?

Looking by Martin Chen

Me: Sure . . .

The last significant relationship I had was with a guy named Marc . . . I guess that was about six years ago . . .

I think he was a good man . . . he had good intentions . . .

We talked about the possibility of getting married at some point . . . he wanted children . . . I’m ambivalent about having kids . . . I don’t want to have children . . . as in, I don’t want to actually bear children . . . you know, with my own body . . .

But, I would be open to adopting an older child . . . maybe two older children . . . he was willing to go that route . . . he was adopted, so that stuck a chord with him . . .

When we tried to cohabitate, it didn’t go so well. He left most of the domestic chores for me to do. When I tried to negotiate a more equitable arrangement, he would seem to participate in the negotiations, but then he never carried through.

When it was his turn to cook, he would conveniently end up eating dinner at his best friend’s house. When he was supposed to go grocery shopping, he suddenly had to work late, so I’d have to go shopping if I wanted groceries with which to prepare my next few meals.

I still ended up doing most of the work . . . and there was more housework with him there than there was without him there.

I knew that, if we got married and adopted kids, I would end up doing all the domestic chores . . . and it would be ten times worse with a family. There is no way I would sign onto that. So, I broke up with him . . . I mean . . . why continue dating when it was clear to me there was no future for us . . . ??

So, I think he had really good intentions . . . and, other than dumping the chores on me, he treated me well. I think he had some serious psychological issues . . . he suffered a lot of abuse growing up . . . way more than I did, I think. I think he was emotionally zoned out most of the time. So that’s what happened there . . .

Oh, and . . . Todd, the author of the “Heaven” book . . . I think he was . . . well, I imagine he still is a good guy. What I read in the book causes me to think that is still the case.

Edward: What happened with the relationship with Todd . . . what caused it to end?

Me: I don’t know . . . he just lost interest . . . which is the same as what happened with pretty much all the other men . . . they never tell me why, they just make excuses and pull away. I never know what I did wrong . . . they always use that dumb excuse . . . “It’s me, not you” . . . yeah, right.

Edward: Of those good men, what was good about them . . . ??

Me: Hmmmm . . . I guess I don’t really know . . .

I guess they paid attention to me . . .

(With a sarcastic snort/laugh) That’s all I was really looking for . . . that was my only criterion. I considered them to be good men if they would just pay a little bit of attention to me.

Edward: As I’ve been listening to what you’ve been saying, I’ve been wondering . . . has the real you ever shown up on a date?

Me: No.

Edward: Why not?

Me: Who would want a date with the real me?

Edward: What do you mean?

Me: It is all I can do to get myself out of bed and show up to teach . . . I don’t have enough energy and gumption to make myself attractive and “pulled together” enough to be attractive enough to date.

Sometimes I can polish my appearance enough to look more pulled together, but I can’t imagine being around someone – a man I’m dating – when I’m in my slob mode . . . I can’t imagine ever relaxing enough to be around a man when I’m not in my more professional mode . . . and I sure as heck don’t want to have to be “pulled together” twenty-four/seven.

I think a man would be grossed out if he saw how I lived and operated on a daily basis.

Edward: Tell me about that . . . what is gross and unattractive about how you operate on a day-to-day basis?

Me: Well, my living space can get pretty messy . . . it is pretty small, so it doesn’t take much to get it all messed up. I mean, I’m not a terrible housekeeper . . . it’s just that I don’t keep it clean on a daily basis.

I go through and pick it up – put everything back in its place once a week – but I can go months without running the vacuum or deep-cleaning the bathroom. I just clean the really gross spots, but I don’t worry too much about the rest . . .

No one comes into my space . . . well, not guests. My housemates and occasionally maintenance guys go in there, but I don’t entertain guests there . . . we would have to sit on my bed since that is the only space I have . . . that’s really not ideal. So, I don’t feel a great need to keep my space ultra-clean . . .

When I had a house . . . or an apartment . . . a place in which I could entertain . . . I could get messy for periods of time, but then I would deep-clean every time I knew someone was coming over . . . and that usually happened at least every week or two. I actually kept it pretty clean. But now . . . well, now . . . my living space can get pretty ugly.

[Continued in the next post . . . ]

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