Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hey girl-who-I-was-dating-when-I-was-a-teenager, remember that time you ripped my heart out and stomped on it and crushed my will to live? Ah, good times…

The divorce is final, and me and my children have been officially buttfucked by the state of Kansas. What, you were expecting something else? There’s one upside to this whole fucking mess, my kids are going back to school. I can’t pretend I don’t have mixed feelings about this… School is a brutal place. Bullies abound, many teachers are jaded, some just suck, and the religious fucktards are out in force trying to destroy what little value the public school system has left. But until America starts taking education seriously and starts fixing the schools and giving it adequate funding, it’s the best option I’ve got. Homeschooling by a religious fucktard with a high school education is just not an option.

So now I find myself a single guy at 41 with a tiny apartment and six cats. Where did the six cats come from? I got sort of blindsided there. I adopted a stray cat who was hanging around my apartment. She turned out to be pregnant. Now I have six cats to get shots for, and spay and neuter. This while I’m struggling to find money to eat on. The good times just keep coming.

So I find myself back in the dating world. I’ve actually been there for a little bit. I’ve been through one girlfriend, another… I don’t know what the fuck that one was… and finally settled on what I thought was a fairly normal relationship.

I’m pretty easy to keep. I don’t have very many rules. I was thinking about this (online via Twitter) and I think they boil down to the following:

  1. Don’t be batshit crazy.
  2. Don’t be controlling.
  3. Don’t violate my trust.
  4. Don’t blow me off.
1. Don’t be batshit crazy.

You would think this one would be pretty simple, but my wife of 17 years couldn’t seem to get the swing of this one. To this day I don’t think she recognizes anything she’s done as in any way shape or form abnormal. I gave up trying to explain it to her years ago. In hindsight, I should have filed for divorce at the same time, but I waited another 7 years or so. My bad.

Everybody has crazy. Everybody. I have more than my fair share. Many of us recognize our own crazy and try to keep it in check. Mentally I think of it as having a mask I show to the outside world. I have a face everybody gets to see. It looks fairly normal, geeky, intelligent, and frequently a bit grumpy. I have the mask I show here. It’s filtered mainly to outrage about religious fucktards and right wing nutjobs trying to fuck us all over. Sometimes I let a little of my spiritual musings out here. Not as much lately. Dr. Cowboy is a mask. I’m anonymous for a reason. It’s also a persona. Don’t take it personally, I have a persona for everybody. The only person who knows what it’s really like in my head is me. I keep hoping I’ll find somebody who wants to find out what it’s like in here, but realistically, not gonna happen.

2. Don’t be controlling.

The ex also had an issue with this, and this rule is largely because of her. She has a spider like need to have this web of control over everything in her life. I’m guessing it has something to do with her dad leaving the family. Daddy issues. I think a lot of that came out at me. I tried to be supportive and helpful for years, but I finally had to give up. The crazy just got too thick and it was affecting my kids. Still is now, but I can no longer do anything about it. Actually I couldn’t do anything about it before, but at least now I have the legal backing to get my kids in school. That was about my only win.

My wife also exerted control over who my friends could and couldn’t be. I was a pussy and let her. I lost many good friends over the years. So earlier this year when a friend needed help and my girlfriend at the time had a problem with it, the relationship more or less ended. There were other factors, but that was a big one.

3. Don’t violate my trust.

This has happened twice so far since being separated. I won’t go into details, but it’s a big deal breaker for me. If I’m with you I will trust you to the ends of the Earth (figuratively speaking) until you give me a good reason not to. Revealing personal details you were privy to that others weren’t is a biggie. Twice now it’s happened and twice now it ended relationships. My ex did it in smaller ways, and for many years I let it go. I can’t do that anymore. I haven’t been cheated on that I’m aware of, at least not for 20 years or so, but if it happened, that would fall under this rule. Cowboy don’t play that game either.

4. Don’t blow me off.

This one was almost an afterthought. The situation I find myself in is largely because of this. My current girlfriend hasn’t—to the best of my knowledge—violated rules 1, 2, or 3. That’s why I’ve spent the last three weeks or so feeling really frustrated. The relationship started out really great, nothing held back, we were good together. Something changed along the way. I think it’s largely a result of a friend who violated my trust, but I can’t be sure. At any rate, that ended the friendship, but the damage is done.

I reached the point that despite how I felt about my girlfriend, despite the fact that I’ve known her for 11 years and been attracted to her on both a physical and intellectual level for that entire time, besides the fact that she seems to be in almost every way my perfect woman, I was ready to end it. Then she finally talked to me. I found out that there was damage as a result of my friend’s violation of my trust. Understandable, completely. But now she wants to be “casual” and “see where it goes”. What? What the fuck? What the fuck does that even mean?

I’ve been out of the dating game for a long, long time, so I get confused on terminology these days. If I were to hazard a guess, I would think that means that  we’re now no longer in a relationship, but we can go on dates occasionally, but we’re not exclusive. Exclusive implies relationship to me. Casual implies not a relationship. I put the question out in the twitterverse and the twitterverse seems to agree with me: my relationship is basically over.

But I went on a date with her last night. See, this confuses me. If she wants a bud, that’s fine, but let’s call it what it is. I’ll stop hoping for any kind of intimacy. I can look elsewhere. If we’re dating casually, then it’s largely the same as buds except I can hope for sex.

If I can’t date other people, then it’s a relationship. Relationships have rules. I don’t know what any of them are anymore, and it’s still frustrating the fuck out of me, and I can’t seem to nail her down on what her definition of our relationship is, other than we’re “dating casually” and “seeing where it goes”. Well whoop de fucking do. That’s a fucking cop out. That’s “I’m not really committed to making anything work, and if I get tired of you or find something I like better in that moment I’m gone.” Not that there’s anything wrong with that attitude, except it’s not for me. I’m 41, I’m at least halfway through my life, and I have less time left to live than I’ve already lived. My health is already going downhill, and I’ve fucked up the first half of my life pretty good. I’d like to get the second half right, and fucking around like that doesn’t seem like the way to do it. But then again… it’s HER…

I’m going to try to nail her down on some definitions later today, and hopefully find out if I’m free to look around or not. But for the record, I don’t really want to look around. I would like things to go back to how they were before, when we were in love. Yes, love. Or at least something that felt a lot like love. Then again, maybe I don’t really know what the hell love is. Look who I stayed married for almost 2 decades?

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