Losing my Latest Boyfriend…But Gaining Perspective
….I miss the cell phone ring indicating he has left another cheery message.
….I miss his laugh.
….and when I picked up my son last night he was talking quite a bit about him…before I explained we had broken up.
….it is amazing how quickly schoolwork and music and time with Spencer, Ann and Mike have filled up that void…
….I am not angry…
….I guess I am stung by his use of the term “embarrassed” at having been “in love” words he called “immature” now.
….and the moment I was sniveling like the female I am proud to be…
….when he muttered that I was crying like this was a longer and more important relationship then it was to him…
….my tears ground to a halt. I could feel my face instantly dry.…
….Suddenly I felt so much less about the whole thing…I’ll be darned if I grieve alone.
He wasn’t meaning to be cruel…but ask any women you know and they will see shades of something we are very familiar with since we are the ones who help the whole family process their emotions.
We hear so much more then they mean to say…
Now that last 2 days was such a far cry from what I had experienced I was not sure what to think. The guy who laughed so well with his kids and loved my dog and all pets…and seemed to truly be interested in me, (I know I love the guy still)…seemed to disappear as he switched to the guy who had to win at all costs…not just “win”…but crush his opponent. And right now I was the opponent.
That whole time though he did not stay “mean” but interspliced this combat personality with his normal kind easy going self. The normal version of him has an easy laugh…and a happy sense of humor that seems to see humor in everything…even when my dog took his side…he is not a monster at all….other wise we would not have gone so far so fast. I deserved to fall for him…in a lot of ways I had not been so genuine since my first, Gordon.
Even though I knew in his heart he is a kind and funny person…his switch seemed so sudden I felt a lot less safe around him with words…even though he is laid back and light hearted. I had the idea he was meaning to crush me…rather then engage in normal couple rules.
I say normal couple rules…as if there are any….but I took a goofy marriage and money class at Sonora High. We learned that you have the right to have feelings and you should never tell the other one how to feel. We learned to validate and accept the other’s view before launching into your own view of what happened recognizing that each person’s perspective was valid and worthy.
My last man who left me while I was out of the country would not win sensitivity awards by his own honest admission…but he would regularly say.... “Your feelings are your feelings…you never need to walk away feeling your feelings aren’t validated. We all have feelings. Period.”
I could tell my really nice guy though was in a mood to crush me.
I know he would not mean it and I said so…before I could finish explaining what I was hearing so he could change my perception or explain what he really meant for me to hear, he snapped with an “then don’t even tell me…you know I didn’t mean to hurt you. I shouldn’t have to tell you what I meant if you know I am usually nice.”
The question was at the time-How do I jump on the task of explaining how I was perceiving his arguing technique compared to my own which insists on me validating, honoring and accepting? How do I explain that he was vicious compared to what I was used to? And if he was suddenly ruthless, was I even willing to go there anyway?
I was lost in a quandary. I know there are differences between men and women and that they are fundamental and biological. I appreciate those differences and the times I live in where I am free to notice or ignore them if I wish.
My boyfriend before had told me in a moment of pure brilliance on his part a wonderful and helpful vision of the male psyche.
“If you and I are arguing there can be a point where my masculine side takes over. I turn into the football player version of myself involved in a conflict. Then you will cease to be dealing with a friend and find yourself in mortal combat with a soldier who needs to crush his opponent. I won’t care if that opponent is you.”
I saw this masculine side of my latest….and as loving and kind as he is…I am not really excited about the guy who needed to crush me verbally, when he had already won, made his point (and probably already lost me)…
Since Manny told me his masculine secret, I have seen other situations where I saw men vehemently argue on behalf of their Holy Right to do almost anything…even while I was an onlooker knowing full well that the guy does not really want to win this argument. It seems almost like a wild inner drive to be on top of that battle. Even if they would not let anyone else treat a female that way. We are not talking about violent. Or even heartless, just viciously arguing for upper ground. Even if the point is mute and meaningless.
From my perspective us women go into arguments like we are dealing with the man we love or the child we need to convince. We go in wanting to lift up their personalities not squish them…we want them to feel validated and tended to and at least partially correct in their view. We never intend to CRUSH our opponents. Not ever. It creates more work for us in the long run so we avoid it like the plague.
Under these kind of gender gaps…how can anyone get along? Even with the perfect mate? Not even for a very handsome face that had me laughing for a good percentage of our time together, can I find myself having the time to try to hammer a road of positive communication through the wide gap we have between our collective camps.
But it does make me wonder….what do our daughters learn from dads who need to crush their females in a verbal discussion? That is not a lesson any guy I know wants his daughter to learn! Or would they want their daughters to find a romantic partner who hears them…and validates them…instead…? These really wholesome and good guys seem to think that if they hide behind resentful silence instead…it makes it OK. But my feeling is that whatever they do to the women around now…will be what their daughters will be expecting in her life later.
It makes it easier to not miss the cell phone’s happy chime. I can let that go.