Posts Tagged ‘men’

An Open Letter To Newly-Divorced Men – Spoiler: Tough Love Ahead

At the risk of sounding insensitive…. Oh screw it.

Disclaimer: I will be a bitch in the upcoming memo to divorced guys. Trust me, it’s for your own good.

Dear newly or almost divorced guys,

Once upon a time I was going to weddings every weekend. Some weekends I’d have more than one wedding to choose from. Open bars were fun. Some of the other wedding stuff (especially the showers) got old. At one point I was complaining and my mom said, “Be thankful. You’re in the early phase. Right now you’re going to weddings. In a few years it will be baby showers and divorces. And baby showers for people trying to avoid divorces. Then it’ll be second marriages. And then you’ll start going to funerals. So you’re in the blissful stage now.”

Well, folks, the train has officially stopped in Divorceville. Population: One million awkward guys.

I write this with love. And a little out of fear. But mostly out of social discomfort.

You guys are freaks!

There, I said it. Divorced guys. It’s like they went into some weird brainwashing cult, and came out minus any social decorum. They say, “It’s been awhile since I’ve been single.” But the behavior they display was NEVER OK. Not in college. Not in high school. Hell, the guys that were lucky enough to be my “boyfriends” in middle school had more tact and self-control than these guys (and there was no sex-having or anything in my middle school – so this truly was the sweet, innocent, first days of learning about love).

My point is, since you seem to have no social decorum, I’m here to help. The awkward you create is awkward for all of us. You will never find a good catch as long as you act this way. You’re not showing interest in someone, you’re showing blind, sweeping, desperation for ANYONE.

So, here are some ground rules. Continue reading

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Who Needs The Right Fiance When You Have The Right Ring?

I don’t know why I preface my blogs with caveats, because I can never hit all of the, “but what if…” scenarios. In this case, I’m speaking specifically of one event, with one person, and the situation she’s in, and the irony.

I say this because while I’m speaking of one person, I know this CAN BE a phenomenon. And it’s maddening.

That said, let’s do this!

I have a friend who somewhat recently found out her boyfriend was cheating on her. With multiple girls, across multiple occurrences. His excuse? She was being a bitch during that time and he needed someone who wasn’t. So he stuck his dobber in a bunch of randos.

Can we pause to say how disgusting this is, people? I mean, really. One in three people has some type of STD/STI. And many cheaters (and closeted gay men) don’t use condoms because having/using a condom is often a sign of premeditation. If it’s all “in the moment” then it’s not as guilt-causing. And if it’s all in the moment, then who has a condom? This is spontaneity, people! But, I digress.

Continue reading

Thru The Years: Swapping Places And It Feels Good

Now that I’ve settled into life past the 30 year old mark, I realize it’s not as old as it felt when I was sixteen. In fact, thirty has been a pretty good decade so far. Got rid of some carryover (carry-on?) baggage from my twenties and am happier than ever being single. It’s liberating, actually. I’m not sure exactly what it is. Like most things probably a combination of several factors.

First, the general self-esteem you get as you grow up. As your self-worth grows through compound interest and the time value of confidence, you realize not only do you not NEED anyone, but you also don’t want just anyone. This, my friends, is my favorite part of being over thirty.

Second, social pressures seem to ease a little. There are a few different kinds of pressure. Familial pressure (coming from parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles and all of THEIR frends) eases if you’ve been alone for awhile. The human brain is incapable of NOT adapting. If you’re alone for awhile, those who used to notice and comment simply stop noticing. Those who have parents whose happiness seems to hinge on their child getting married and having babies? I can’t relate, but empathize. Not sure if that ever goes away unless you pay for them to get therapy, or get remarried to someone else, or find something that will occupy them and make them happy.

The same general eventual adaptation to being alone happens with your friends, of course. But, the friends who were so pushy also start to see how great being single can be as opposed to marrying just anyone. Men complain about nagging, how much work parenting is, and joking (or not) about being single again/choosing better next time. Women are annoyed by filth, lack of intimacy/magic and being only a mom/wife, rather than her own person. While it’s always easy to think the grass is greener, there is often times a gap between the fantasy and reality of marriage and parenting, for both sexes. And on those days, they see how their ingle friends are genuinely happy and not crying themselves to sleep in a puddle of lonely misery.

And, finally, the more of us singles there are out there, and the more divorce numbers climb like STD rates, the more everyone appreciates holding onto your S card. Forever or until it’s right. Ignoring the social norms pushing us all toward marriage is a big relief on many people feeling like failures until they do get married.

Women feel this pressure in their twenties. Our self-worth is large defined by how desired we are by the opposite sex. If we are attached, we are valued, beautiful, respected and complete. If we aren’t courted, we are somehow appraised at a lower value. And through this time, the men are in a position of power. They have the ability to legitimize us as worthy or otherwise. This results in a lot of highs and lows based on a questionable resource.

However, as we move into our late 20s and see the marriages of our friends reach their five and seven year marks (and some fizzle out), we realize how important choosing the right mate is. We are also reaching a stride in our careers and generally are financially able to take are of ourselves, afford luxuries we used to think we needed a man to buy (or split the cost of – like vacations, rent, houses, cars jewelry). And it hits us – we can provide everything we NEED. And furthermore, why would we want to get in a relationship with a guy who could take it all away? Spending our nest egg, making our house smell like feet while hosting his friends very weekend because our place is nicer than his, then cleaning up their mess because he doesn’t gleam, picking up the tab because we earn more, being dragged down by a no-motivation, slacker, likely alcoholic momma’s boy. Yeah, suddenly our standards skyrocket to where they always should have been.

Meanwhile, these guys we used to put up with don’t know how to treat a woman respectfully, don’t know how to put in more work than a post-bar text, and suddenly find themselves alone when this no longer cuts it. They know there are smart, beautiful, interesting women out there, but they can’t seem to get their attention. They dip into the pool of younger girls for awhile. Then become desperate.

This happens generally around their 30th-35th birthday. They realize they’re getting “old” and are alone and the women they’re dating now aren’t as interesting at they used to be. Many of their buddies are married and that’s really how they always saw themselves anyway. They think, “OK, I’m ready.” But the girls of their dreams don’t crawl out of the woodwork like they always imagined. They start to panic. Try to settle with any girl who comes along. But their baggage they picked up in their twenties still follows them: drinking until they’re sloppy and belligerent is ok for a 22 year old, not a 32 year old, their dinky, dirty, grimy bachelor pad apartment near the bar district doesn’t scream sexy, and their inability to look forward in a career or be able to manage finances isn’t exactly quirky and sweet anymore.

Suddenly the tables have turned. Women don’t need men, and men are desperate.

It’s called poetic justice, people. And apparently it’s what your 30s are made of!

Author’s note: While I am cynical, I want to be fair. I know a plenty of women with the same issues I’ve listed freely as men’s issues. And also know just as many men who are great catches. The point is, I’ve noticed the trend of women getting into their thirties and approaching men the way men did in their twenties, and vice versa in men (who act now like we did in our 20s). This is a generalization for illustrative purposes.

A Cheater Is As A Cheater Does

I was reading an article on CNN about why women cheat. And for the record, I think any article generalizing all women is absurd. So let me get that out there. I don’t think you can say “all women.” And even saying “most women” is a stretch. There’s a huge difference between me and my closest friends (who I have things in common with, otherwise we wouldn’t be friends) and even me and my sisters in our motivations and tendencies. We all have our own personalities and why we do what we do can’t be characterized in general.

But, aside from that, I had to pick out a few of the most annoying points in this article.

  1. On men cheating: “Many of them even characterize themselves as happily married with satisfying sex lives.” This, strangely, was a reason that men cheating is better than women. Apparently because they don’t care about the person they stuck it in, it makes it more acceptable. Um, no it doesn’t. Have you heard of STDs? Have you heard of illegitimate children that I would be helping raise? Have you heard of lying? Have you heard of commitment, morals or right and wrong? Annoying. Listen, Ian, let’s say we’re married (although, clearly, our divide this early in our relationship means we shouldn’t be). If you stuck it in some chick, it’s over. If I let some dude stick it in me. It’s over. We’re not happy enough to be monogamous. Why are we together? Hopefully by the time we figure this out, we don’t have kids.
  2. On a woman’s income correlating to her likelihood of cheating: “A University of Washington study found that people who earned $75,000 or more per year were 1.5 times more likely to have had extramarital sex than those earning less than $30,000.” I can’t speak from experience here, because I’ve never been married and haven’t been in a committed relationship for a long time… But I’m going to go out on a limb here and say women who don’t feel dependent on a man are more likely to seek out happiness of their own. Rather than feeling like she owes the man. I have no problem with one-income families. In fact, I wish I were trusting enough to be in one. But, when my first boyfriend broke up with me out of the blue, I realized he could have done that five years into our marriage, with a few kids. And I’d be stuck because I intended to be a stay at home mom. I didn’t have any plans to put much focus into college. But when he left, and I couldn’t do anything about it, I realized I need to take care of ME to give ME a chance to be able to take care of myself. Because I guarantee you, dude leaves, he’s fine. He has the job. He has the money. And I’m sorry if I’m cynical and jaded. But when I do get married, if I’m not happy, I’m a lot more likely to get out and be happy if I can take care of myself. So I say in this case, you go girl! (No, I do not condone cheating. But I do condone finding someone you’re happy with. Life’s way too damn short.)
  3. For men, cheating often tends to be opportunistic—they’re in the wrong place at the wrong time and the cheating doesn’t necessarily mean anything emotionally—whereas with women the desire to cheat is often less opportunistic and more deeply felt.” This is one of the most ridiculous statements in the article. So, because men don’t think, it makes their actions OK? I think maybe men should start thinking. (Yes, I know I’m starting to generalize here. But I tend to do that when I get generalized.)

All that said, I think cheating is deplorable and selfish. If you’re not happy, communicate. Figure out what you need to be happy. If your partner can’t give that to you, make it clear that you’ll find someone who can (after ending the relationship).Then follow through. Leave him or her. And find someone who does make you happy. Why’s it gotta be so complicated?

And for God’s sake, if you know you have no self-control, or can’t see yourself with one person the rest of your life. Don’t get married! Sheesh.