24 August 2008

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

This may sound silly, but I would rather be dumped than do the breaking up. I know, it's ludicrous. But, I am terrible at doing the dumping. The guy either cries or thinks we stand another chance. Never a clean break. Always a little mess. I'm getting better at it, though. Now, they just think I'm cold just because I put the kibosh on the whole "let's still be friends" thing. Whatever.

I understand the difficulty of doing it, finding the right time and circumstance to say, "This isn't working." But, at some point you have to woman up and do it. You can't drag it out, keep telling your friends, "I think this is the week I'll end it." At a certain point, you have to pull the plug, not only for your sake, but his as well. It's the kind thing, the right thing to do. What if you were in a relationship with someone you adored and he knew there wasn't a real future for the two of you, but he kept it going because you are such a nice gal, a good person, and, while there's nothing wrong with you, he just doesn't see the two of you making it in the long run...how would you feel if he dragged it out a month or three or twelve or thirty? You deserve to find the right person for you, and so does he. So, eat your spinach, take a multi-vitamin, have an extra shot of espresso in your latte -- whatever it takes to get your courage up to say, "Babe, we need to talk."

10 August 2008

When to Give and When to GOH

I don't like to make excuses for people. Especially someone I'm dating. We all have to take responsibility for our own lives, and sometimes that means accepting the person or situation for what it is. That's easy to do when things are going your way. Not so much when they aren't.

Women are lucky because we can use both sides of our brains pretty much at the same time. We can figure something out in an instant. Generally, we know what we want, how we want it, how easy it is to have that happen. Then, we introduce a man into the situation, and all our plans hit the skids.

It's not the man's fault. They are an unknown, unpredictable entity. Yet, we want to be able to predict them. Script them. Schedule them. It just doesn't work that way. We ought to know that by now. But our damn brains, working at their rapid pace, always seem to know how things should go. And get really irritated when what they've mapped out is ignored.

It's important to set boundaries, have parameters, know what you are willing to take and what you are not. It keeps you safe, keeps your self-respect intact. It can also keep you alone if those boundaries and parameters turn into hoops and hurdles you expect others to jump through or climb over. There is a give and take to be had. And the trick of it is knowing when to give and knowing when to GOH.

My favorite quote from Maya Angelou is: "When someone shows you who they are, believe them." My favorite quote from Anais Nin is: "We don't see things as they are. We see things as we are." If you can keep both of those quotes in mind, it can help you decide if you should give or get GOH-ing.

Of course we want things on our time schedule, according to our well-crafted plans. After all, they are so brilliant and simple, and everyone wins. But, we can't expect to have others fall in line just because it makes sense to us, to be that controlling. I mean, do we want to live by someone else's clock or calendar or jump through their hoops? Sometimes we have to look outside ourselves to get a clearer picture.

There are times you need to give a man some slack. Understand there are external things that neither of you can control, be it work, school, or family issues. Sure, our egos would like to be first all the time, no matter what. But aren't there times when important people and things have to take a back seat to something else in your world? Exactly. We see things as we are. And sometimes we are a bit selfish. Hate to say it, but it's true. Slack is different than a "hold" button. You can keep moving forward with your life. He can pick up the slack and find his way back.

Of course, it's a different case if a guy isn't keeping his word, if he's making excuses for bad manners and such. To me, that's a clear sign it's time to GOH. Maya is a wise woman. When he shows you who he is, and that person isn't exactly honorable, it's foolish not to let go. Cut the ties and free yourself. It might hurt, like a bad bikini wax, but it will be over just as quick and heal just as fast if you let it. Because our brains are wonderful at that. They would rather focus on something new not mull over the old.

We want to give. We are a generous species, almost to a fault. Just remember, giving is supposed to feel good. If it leaves you empty, then it must be time to GOH.