I've seen some relationship and dating type issues happening with other people lately that make me really happy that I'm not involved with anyone right now. I realize that they're not really typical of all relationships, but they're showing up far more often than I'd like to believe.
Honestly, the bad stuff seems more centered around younger folks. Seems to be a lot more intolerance and cruelty that is considered acceptable when you are young, though I don't know how much of that is just inexperience of life and how much is a newer age that we live in. Or maybe it's always been there, but it has just changed forms.
Or maybe I've just gotten old, and I don't get it anymore.
I like the concept of love. I like the concept of a romantic partnership. I like the whole new relationship experience, I like being that close to someone special. But I also hold out hope for special to mean something other than short-bus: I want patience and understanding and honesty. I want solidity and permanence, and passion and depth. I have to think that those things exist and that they're real and I will be able to find a partner with those qualities, because the alternative is pretty fucking poor.
I hold myself back on purpose. I know that I am not in a good place to be a romantic partner because I have too much baggage, too much stuff that I need to fix before I can really carry my own load, much less help support a loved one. Some of those things I'm working on. Some of them I'm not. Some of those things I don't know how to work on, and some of them I don't even know how to understand.
But at the same time, I'm enjoying certain freedoms. I can duck out to a sleazy strip club pretty much whenever I want and not feel guilty. I can walk around the house naked. I can leave the seat up. I can watch whatever the hell I want to watch on TV. I can talk to other women, and flirt relentlessly. I can have as much sex as I can afford. I can make Barbie give GI Joe a lap dance without hearing derogatory comments. I can make porn. I can have naked hot-tub parties with a bunch of college girls I met over the weekend.
At least I can do these things. Doesn't mean that I am doing them. But those things aren't necessarily things that I have to lose if I ever get involved with someone again. I think it would be pretty damn fantastic to go to a strip club with my woman and have her enjoy the experience as much as I do.
My woman. Like she's a posession. Alien thought, that. I don't do the posession of other people thing. I'm not a pimp, or a slaver. I'm good with monogamy (or monoamory if you want to call it that to avoid the whole marriage thing, or monotony if you're really being cynical), but I'm also conscious of polyamory, and polyfuckery, and a whole gamut of other-than-paired relationships that smear the landscape of love into a rather blurry watercolor. I'm not one to be jealous, but I also am not one to be comfortable as a secondary. Maybe that's something that would come with more experience, but right now it's pretty alien.
I know I should probably date more. I think I'm afraid to. I never really dated much, and what little I did do was before some of you could even read. And I only really dated women who were supermodels, or at least smelled like them. And dear god, I have had some crappy dates. Had some good ones too, but never as first dates. First dates have always been the worst. Most of 'em never even lead to second dates.
Really, I have a much better time with friends. Going out with a group is usually fun, and if I'm meeting somebody new, there's not really any pressure to perform, and if I'm having an off night it doesn't mean total disaster. It's a nice way of seeing if someone has common interests, or is completely incompatible before committing to something more private.
It all sounds so juvenile, doesn't it? Crap in a hat.