Is It Crying Time Again?

I’m not happy with our relationship. I’ve thought over this past week or two that I might dump P. There’s been a lot going on.

  1. P told his parents about our relationship about 3-4 weeks ago. It was the first serious one for both of us. But he’s 17 years older than I am. His parents are visiting from the UK, living with P, and originally planned on staying for 3 months. A couple weeks ago on Dec 30, the morning after flying back from halfway across the world and before a shift, I met them. His mother was initially lovely. However, the day after and since then, she has barely said anything to me. P talked to her the night after we met, and she said that I seemed “sweet” but she was worried that I would dump him because I’m that much younger than him. She also wants him to find (I presume) a much more age-appropriate female to marry and produce children. Ouch. We’ve agreed that it’s not me specifically, but she’s not used to the idea. Personally, I think I have a banging ass. And his dad is totally cool and lovely.
  2. Family Stress #1. The day after I met them, a water pipe burst in his house and flooded the washroom. P was out at the time and they didn’t know where the stopcock was to turn off the water. They spent 5 hours waiting for the plumber. The cat was frightened of the plumber. Everything was wet. (I can understand if his mother wasn’t very chatty that evening, but the no conversation thing has continued past that.)
  3. Family Stress #2. I got his mother a massive bouquet that included eucalyptus and lilies. I didn’t know lilies were toxic for cats and their kidneys. So initially, they tried to keep P’s cat separate from the flowers. But then the day after the plumber, P noticed that a bunch of the leaves were eaten. So a trip to the emergency vet ($900 for one night) and 4 days at the vet ($600) made up the rest of that hellish week.
  4. Family Stress #3. This past week on Wednesday night, his parents went away to the wine region to stay with one of P’s uni mates who’s moved here with her husband and children to work and live. I dropped by after work to sleep over. At about 10pm, he got a call from the UK to say that his best friend’s mother had died. P’s parents are good friends with them as well so they were all devastated. Although this is the weekend, they don’t know whether to stay and miss the funeral of their best friend, or go home, miss half of their holiday and have P pay another $1500.

So amidst all this emotional turmoil, why would I ever consider breaking up with P? That would make me a bitch. It would be a really really cruel thing to do.

There have been a number of things going on that have made me wonder why we’re together and if this will last. I do love P. I really do. But there are deal breakers and if nothing is going to change, then we’re just wasting time and emotional energy. It would be better to end it now than waste time and be even more shattered when we break up later. So what reasons do I have?

  1. Children. P has remained steadfast in casual conversation that he likes children, and he’ll work on them. He’s lovely with O&M, the two boys of one of his good mates. But he will regularly say that children are awful between 2-5 years of age as they have no self-control. Uhh…ride it out. They don’t know any better. They’re children
  2. Digs and pot shots. I dare say P ridicules Christianity. He is an atheist and that’s fine. But I don’t make broad sweeping generalisations about them and then brush it off by saying, “Oh, you’re not really an atheist anyway anymore.” Actually I resent that sentiment. I have pretty much sacrificed my faith when I stopped praying, going to church and serving. But you don’t get to judge my faith. And who makes their partner look bad in front of their mates in social situations?? What the hell. On occasion, he has said that maybe I should stay home and study as he didn’t want to get in the way of my degree when I’ve suggested coming over close to exams and mid-semesters. But what happened there was not ok. I don’t know if it’s teasing, but I’m not laughing. I don’t give it back as good as I get because although I talk like a confident bitch, I’m not in real life. I’m a mild milksop in real life.
  3. I’m bored. I like doing couple-y things like cooking dinner, sitting on the couch watching TV and going out to eat. But there has to be more to a relationship, to life than that surely. I can’t imagine doing only that in 5 years time.
  4. His stoicism. Show some goddamn EMOTION would you?? Other than happy, tired, horny, mildly sad, and mildly annoyed! FUCK!!!!!!
  5. His attitude to our relationship during this stressful time. It’s crap. You know, I was expecting tears when P got that call that his quasi-second-mother-slash-aunt-or-whatever had unexpectedly died. (…not that unexpectedly at 88 years old). But I don’t want to hear that you had a cry on your own. I was right here with you on the couch when you got the call, I was right there in your arms after in the silence. What am I, if not in some way emotional support?? And I get that you want to avoid awkward silence between your mother and me, but we’re adults here, we can deal. But when I get there, within minutes P says, “Ok, we can go!” Or tonight, when I dropped him after paella with his mates K&M at their house, it was a peck on the lips and, “I’ll see you tomorrow… maybe.” I feel marginalised. 

I give a lot of slack. I try not to rock the boat. But this has gone on long enough. We need to talk about things. I rang another one of P’s good mates, and she was a great listener. She actually helped me figure out that last point about feeling insecure and encouraged me to give him a little more slack and wait and think as it’s a particularly rough time right now. Ok, I can do that. It would be really awful of me to bring up another difficult conversation while there’s been a death in the family. I can wait. But it has to be said.

I do think I’m going to cry during that conversation. I don’t think he will. I don’t want to cry, I don’t look pretty when I cry. No one does. I’ve already run through how I’d react if he dumped me. I haven’t thought about it the way where I’d be dumping him though.

I need to go for a workout.

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Drama: the Persistent Weed in my Life

In high school, drama is a staple. It fuels the gossip. Back when I was in high school, it was disseminated through phone calls, MSN messenger, (the then relatively new) Facebook, and if you were rich enough, BBMing. It was thrilling and exciting to find out who had done what, and giggle over a tagged photo of someone doing something stupid. But that was me in high school, a mortifyingly socially awkward individual. Since then, I have eschewed all forms of drama.

Just ignore it, don’t get involved.

That was my motto once I entered moved overseas for university. I specifically didn’t hang out with certain groups of people to avoid it. And yet, like fucking weeds in the garden, they have sprung back to life.

Drama starts off as small shoots, and if you ignore the hydrating drizzle of overheard comments, snippets of interaction.. before you know it, those fuckers of weeds are back in your life, sucking the nutritious emotional energy out of your garden that is your life. … that might have been a protracted analogy.

tl;dr = drama is a drain on my life, and it’s back with a vengeance.

And just what areas of my life are experiencing severe drama overgrowth right now?

M has found a new love interest. When I went home for my sister’s wedding, M and I went to NYC for two days and a night. He told me it would be cheaper to share a bed. I said it didn’t matter to me, but asked if it would be a problem for him. M said no. That night, we got into bed. I accept my fault in permitting inappropriate cuddling, instead of doing the awkward and appropriate distance between us on the bed with the sheets fastidiously tucked in. Then we turned the lights off. I was small spoon and could feel his heart beating faster and harder. I could also feel the specific absence of pelvic-to-rear contact, and we know exactly what that means. It was 1am and we were to get up at 5:30-6am ish, and by that point I was simultaneously annoyed, tired and curious. So I sighed, reached down, grasped it and said, “Do you want me to take care of that?” I will confess that I cheated on P and went down on that redhead. I wouldn’t have minded going for a ride, but when M said, “That’s the first time I’ve ever been kissed,” that I drew back and hesitated.

The next morning, I knew I shouldn’t have done it. We came back home, and later that week, we talked about it. I didn’t tell M about P. I gave practical reasons like not wanting to limit either of us from future relationships while we were on opposite sides of the world. Then I pecked him on the lips when I left. Ohhh so smart. not.

I used to get incessant texts. Now? Now I get nothing. I didn’t think much of the textual silence, until I saw some instagram photos of a Philadelphia trip M went on with “a friend”, who happens to be share my ethnicity, which I know M prefers.

I’m not stupid. I think there’s some sort of mutual interest there because:

  • Normal “friends” don’t make faces at each other with their tongues out as if to lick each other.
  • One of M’s texts: “I have been really busy w [a friend].”
  • Delayed replies by 1-2 days vs. previously near-instantaneous replies
  • Brief Twitter research (read: stalking, OR using my resources)

I initiated a text exchange to try and hear about his Philadelphia trip. I’ve gotten nothing but roadblocks back.

It feels like an undercurrent of, “Hey, you didn’t return my affections, I’m going to play mind games and you can see just what you’re missing. Chase me.” Whatever.

No, not whatever. I do care. I like the attention. Even though it was annoying, it was nice to have that interest, even if I was emotionally unavailable. I don’t want some bitch getting claws into my former crush-er. I probably don’t deserve to have a say in that since M is his own individual, and what I did is morally reprehensible. But I still feel that way.

Oh well, time for bed, I have my first proper race next weekend. Must rest up and train tomorrow morning.

Also, my actual garden is overrun with weeds. I should do some weeding this weekend.

Another C Word: Condoms

I was talking to a friend of mine over in Adelaide. In the course of our conversation, J started teasing me about the age difference between myself and P. I said that in 5 years, it wouldn’t be as bad. J was surprised that I was thinking that far ahead. Apparently last time we spoke, I gave the impression that I was unhappy and thus, going to break up with P. And glancing over my posts, yes, there’s doubt, and in healthy amounts too. Why do I stay? There’s a few different reasons.

Foremost, I know P loves me. P can be very considerate. One example of that is the insistence on safe sex. We’ve never had sex without a condom. I’ve asked and tried to cajole P into no condoms to no avail. I’ve teased, I’ve begged, I’ve coaxed and I’ve wheedled. Despite my attempts, P has steadfastly refused. I’m not that desperate for it to be bare. I can be a bit …obsessive though. Last night, when things were starting to get heated, P told me very unexpectedly that some test results had come back; P is completely clear of all STIs including HIV. I teased back, “…Ok. Considering some of the things we’ve done, I should hope so.” With a slight grin, P said that if I wanted, we could do things without a condom. And we did.

I hadn’t really thought about it till then, but I am glad and thankful that P resisted and waited till we knew for sure. It’s a reality that people have STIs unknowingly or otherwise. There are people who don’t know how to have safe sex, or worse still, know and choose to disregard that knowledge.

I have a confession and I don’t really care if it reflects badly on my parents. My parents chose to keep my siblings and I out of the sexual education classes when it came time. I can respect that they wanted to protect us from sexual things before it had to happen, that they had their morals and stuck to them. And it’s true, I think children are exposed to things of a sexual nature far earlier than reasonable. My parents did try to have the talk with me, but I knew what was coming and pretended I was au fait with it all, you know, Mum being a nurse and all.

So you can imagine why just once, the very first time without a condom and suddenly, the realisation struck me,

“Oh. That’s why no one wants to wear a condom.”

It also helped me understand how, without any sexual education, someone might come to hypothesise that extra-attentive cleansing and washing might prevent pregnancy. Gosh I’m glad I went and read up on my own.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, be safe. Condoms aren’t the end of the world, even though they taste funny. In fact, they make things a little easier in terms of clean up. But when you’re with someone and have absolute confidence and evidence that they’re clean, having that reassurance makes what follows that much better. I guess that could be one possible point of differentiation between fucking and doing something that goes beyond sex.

Them’s flirting words…

I don’t drink coffee. I used to, but found I prefer tea. At least I can sleep with tea. If I’m sleepy during afternoons where I need to study, I take caffeine tablets (100mg) and quarter them with a pill cutter so it’s not so strong. Evidently even roughly 25mg is too much since I couldn’t sleep last night, from 2-3:30am. I tweeted that I couldn’t sleep and the next thing I know, I get a text message from the ever persistent M.

 MS1

MS2

Uhhh….. Alarm bells are going off like crazy. Don’t say I’m adorable! I’m sleepy, dammit! I need sleep for the two long labs and lectures I had today. I replied with a high-five smiley and didn’t reply to his texts.

Why can’t we just be friends?! I swear I’m not leading you on!!!!!!!!!!!

We’re going to have to talk. ARG.

The C Word: Children

My parents always made sure we ate dinner together since we were little. It was a time when everyone at the table had a chance to share what had happened that day. It was probably mundane and dull for them, but those experiences added up to a certain kind of closeness. In a family with four children with 6 years between the oldest and youngest (poor Mum), a variety of personalities, and different activities (again, poor Mum who drove us around!)… it was actually quite nice, looking back. Now, two of my siblings are married, with the third wedding scheduled for this summer.

This wedding and naturally, conjecture as to who would be the first to produce a grandchild has been on my mind of late. I mean, really, with uni on and my dad here, it’s not like I have much to talk about. (Discussion of autonomy in my life with my parents alive is a wholly different post.) So, grandchildren. I posited the first child would come from L&C, whose wedding will be this summer. One sibling is frightened of episiotomies and tearing, and the other has career constraints. I have accepted the opinion that there is no good time to get married and/or have babies.

Something of note was the topic progression at dinner. Mind you, just me and Dad. So, it goes: siblings -> wedding -> married siblings -> grandchildren -> my status as unmarried -> grandchildren (again) -> grandparents -> desired number of grandchildren -> realistic number of grandchildren -> age -> mutagens that affect eggs -> age to have children -> relatives without children -> adoption -> surrogacy -> Bertold Weisner: a scientist who replaced sperm samples with his own and fathered approximately 600 children.

Right. That’s not awkward.

Yes it is.

~

P knows I want children. I love kids. I will readily admit I am clucky. I have some babysitting experience with a range of ages, from barely out of diapers to about year 6. I’d like to think I’ve seen not just the pleasant afternoon visit side of them, but the snotty, wailing, peeing-themselves side too. I know that while I don’t quite have rose-coloured glasses on, there’s still more I have yet to see and experience.

But there aren’t any prerequisites to having babies, aside from introducing an egg to sperm. I mean, just look at all the teenage girls who pop them out easy as anything! Case in point, one girl in my friend R’s graduating year who said,

“Oh, I’m not going to uni, I’m going to have a baby and go on the dole.”

Lovely. I would like to say I do support socialised medicine, I just don’t support entitlement and taking advantage of the system.

Despite my cynicism and frustration, I want kids. I’ve said it to P before. P said, “Why do you want kids? They’re just a prop for you, an accessory.” Paring away the prickles of the question, what are my reasons for having children? I didn’t and don’t actually have an answer.

  • It’s not to give my parents grandchildren (though free babysitting would be nice.)
  • It’s not so that I won’t have to go into a nursing home when I’m grey and wrinkly (though that’s not a guarantee anymore.)
  • It’s not for social acceptance.

What about the reasons do I have? They are small and fragile. Some people would readily interject, “That’s stupid. You’re being selfish. You have unresolved issues.”

But so what? Why can’t my answer be: “because I want to”?  Who ever said you needed approval from a selection panel made up of all and sundry to procreate? This isn’t defending a PhD thesis.

I don’t have original rationale for why I want babies. P doesn’t even want children. It could be a deal-breaker for us. I know P likes children. I mean, hello, if P didn’t, P wouldn’t have a job! But working with children and having children are completely different. This will have to be a discussion, probably spread over multiple occasions. Just having the discussion isn’t enough. There must be logical and pragmatic conclusions.

I wonder if there’s a handbook or something out there. Probably.

Bedtime, ahoy!

Lovesick? I’m sick of it, alright.

If anyone has read far back enough, you might have seen a post about M, wherein I had no idea how to respond when M said they were in serious like with me.

Ok. We were ok for a while. It wasn’t awkward that I turned M’s affections down, no, because we weren’t in the same city anymore, just the same country. Since the incident, M has flown from Sydney back to our hometown and got international texting.

Now, it must be said: M is very nice. M is also a bit young. Like 19 years old young.

However. HOW. EVER. I have counted 100 texts that I’ve received over 5 days. AUGH!! It’s driving me mental!

I realise that being nice is not truly possible if I wish to maintain my sanity and SPACE! I have given as little of a response as possible, sometimes none at all since theoretically, the less material M has to work with, the less there is to talk about. Alas and alack, hints are steadfastly ignored. M makes do with what little I give.

Ways to decrease M’s attentions:

  1. Avoidance. I could continue to give as little response as possible. I doubt this will be successful as after 5 days, M remains quite persistent.
  2. Be blunt. I could say quite plainly, “Go. Away.” Cold, but potentially effective. Like John Lyly wrote in Euphues, “The rules of fair play do not apply in love and war.”
  3. Diversion. “I’m with someone else.” This could work, but given how determined the texts have been, this line could precipitate a confrontation.
  4. Play matchmaker for M with someone else. Not a bad idea.
  5. ???

I don’t want to be cruel since I was also so painfully earnest in my crushes when I was that age. Whatever I choose will have to be some compromise, firm but kind in setting boundaries. If I were on the other side, that’s what I’d want.

FYI, 3 more texts in the time it took to write this. GAH.